What Are the Signs and Symptoms Associated with Cataracts?
The lens of the eye works very much like a camera lens. But when the lens is compromised, we aren’t able to view objects as clearly as we should. This is one of the best ways to describe how a condition called cataracts affects the eyes. While it is normal to experience a slight change in vision, frequent changes in prescription lenses are a sign that something isn’t quite right. At Nevada Eye Physicians, with eight convenient locations in Las Vegas, Henderson, Boulder City, Mesquite, and Pahrump, NV, we provide education and resources to patients who experience the first signs of cataracts.
A cataract forms when the protein in the eye begins to clump together. Due to these clumps, the retina has a difficult time transmitting clear images. While researchers can’t pin down exactly why this happens, there are common risk factors that may make you more susceptible to this condition, such as diabetes or high blood pressure (hypertension). When left untreated, cataracts can cause significant vision loss. The professionals at Nevada Eye Physicians offer solutions to help patients eliminate cataracts and restore their vision. Contact one of our facilities to schedule an appointment if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms:
Cloudy vision and other cataract symptoms
A cataract has little effect on your vision at first. You may notice that objects are slightly blurred, as if you were looking through a piece of cloudy glass. Many patients describe seeing halos around lights. For others, a nearby light source may seem too bright or glaring, causing a headache. Since cataracts develop as a result of built-up protein, the lens of the eye may appear cloudy or white. As the condition progresses, the lens will continue to change color.
Signs of cataracts may vary among patients, so don’t discount small symptoms such as light sensitivity or difficulty reading. Cataracts could even lead to potentially dangerous situations. For example, if you are traveling at night and oncoming headlights cause too much glare, this may impede your ability to drive.
Even if you are unsure these signs are a result of cataracts, there are other serious eye conditions that cause cataract-like symptoms. Symptoms should be assessed by a physician right away to make sure your eye health in on track. Our experienced doctors can provide you with a cataract diagnosis and give you what you need to begin seeing clearly again.
Prevent cataracts at any age
Though cataracts are more likely to develop in older adults, young people may be at risk as well. Injuries to the eye and certain medications can increase your chances of getting cataracts. While some risk factors can’t be controlled, such as genetics, there are ways you can take action against cataracts. There are several strategies that may help, including:
Schedule regular eye exams: Examinations can detect cataracts and other eye problems at the early stages. Ask Nevada Eye Physicians how often you should visit based on your individual case.
Quit smoking: Smoking is not just hazardous to your vision but your overall health. Your primary care doctor can offer plenty of helpful resources to help you kick the tobacco habit.
Manage your other health problems: Conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure increase your risk of cataracts. Take control of your health by closely following your physician’s instructions.
Eat a healthy diet: Vitamin-rich foods such as fruits and vegetables ensure that you get the nutrition you need. Certain foods can help maintain the health of your eyes and boost your overall vision.
Protect your eyes: Wearing sunglasses protects your eyes from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays. You should also shield your eyes with protective goggles when working outside or doing manual labor.
Treating cataracts with surgery
Individuals with a cataract diagnosis may require new glasses for reading or performing other daily activities. Eye drops or prescription medications may also help with certain cataract symptoms. But if vision problems are affecting your day-to-day life or putting you in danger, these options are not enough to help. As these symptoms continue to progress, removing the cataract may be your only option.
Cataract surgery by an ophthalmologist is a simple and relatively painless solution to regain clear vision. During this procedure, your doctor at Nevada Eye Physicians will remove the cloudy lens and replace it with a clear artificial one called an intraocular lens or IOL. This permanent lens is personalized for each patient and held in place by small, flexible loops. Our surgeons are skilled in a range of eye surgeries and can provide traditional and laser surgical procedures for patients. While the implant won’t change the appearance of the eye, it will dramatically improve your vision.
Are cataracts holding you back?
With cataract surgery, the goal is to improve vision and decrease your dependence on visual aids such as glasses or reading lights. Most patients who choose surgery report clearer vision and the ability to read, drive, and participate in their favorite activities once again. If you are experiencing signs of cataracts or have a cataract diagnosis, don’t allow vision loss to hold you back any longer. Reach out to the professionals at Nevada Eye Physicians in Las Vegas, Henderson, Boulder City, Mesquite, or Pahrump, NV, to schedule your eye examination and private consultation.