What Can Happen If My Cataracts Go Untreated?
Living with cloudy vision can often create an even cloudier future. At Nevada Eye Physicians, our aim is to put you on a clear path to a successful diagnosis and treatment for your existing or emerging cataracts. With eight locations including Las Vegas, Henderson, Boulder City, Mesquite, and Pahrump, NV, we can help you see the signs of cataracts at one of our accessible facilities.
What exactly are cataracts?
Cataracts can be easily summarized as vision seen through a "foggy" lens. As a result, the retina finds it difficult to transmit ideal and accurate images, thus creating what is commonly known as blurry or hazy vision. Cataracts are the most common cause of vision loss in people over the age of 40.
The good news? You’re not alone, as the development of cataracts is commonly considered a normal part of the aging process. It is also rarely painful. But if the cataract symptoms are not detected, diagnosed, and treated in a timely manner, complications from your cataracts will most likely occur and could only get worse over time. Let the highly skilled ophthalmologists, optometrists, and surgeons at Nevada Eye Physicians utilize their advanced cataract techniques to determine the right course of action for you. When detected early and in cases when no other prominent eye condition exists, cataract treatments such as surgery have a very high success rate.
What are the tell-tale signs of cataracts?
In addition to clouded vision, symptoms of cataracts may also include various issues such as "halos" around direct light, sensitivity to bright lights, the fading of colors, and even double vision.
To treat cataracts, an invasive procedure isn’t always necessary. Once the team at Nevada Eye Physicians has properly diagnosed your condition, we’ll recommend the next best steps in the vision-correction process for your individual case. This could be anything from simply prescribing new corrective lenses to scheduling cataract surgery, but the important message is that an accurate and timely cataract diagnosis is necessary to prevent further long-term damage.
What happens if I ignore the symptoms of cataracts?
Ignoring the signs of cataracts will only exacerbate various levels of vision loss. While each condition is different for every eye and person afflicted, they all can adversely affect your vision.
Here are the five most common problems created by untreated cataracts:
1) Reduced vision
Seemingly everyday tasks like reading road signs, watching television, or shopping for groceries may become increasingly more challenging due to a reduction in vision.
2) Difficulty driving
Not only can driving become a more strenuous task with ailing vision, you’ll also be putting yourself and others in increased danger, especially at night or during inclement weather.
3) Decreased night vision
Driving and seeing at night is already difficult, and untreated cataracts only intensify the problem. Poor night vision can lead to a myriad of safety concerns for yourself and others.
4) Increased sensitivity
Bright lights and direct sunlight may continue to irritate your eyes, cause progressive damage from UV light, and play an integral role in the degenerative decline of your overall vision. Always protect yourself from any further damage with easily accessible items like hats and sunglasses.
5) Legal or total blindness
While permanent blindness is the extreme, what is often overlooked is that legal blindness from cataracts could be just as detrimental to your lifestyle. For the best results from cataract surgery, it’s generally advised that patients have the procedure before the cataract causes low vision or legal blindness. Advanced cataracts that cause significant vision loss can be more difficult to remove and increase the risk of complications from cataract surgery.
What are my options for cataract treatments?
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), cataracts are the number-one cause of blindness in the world. Recognizing the signs of cataracts early will help you prevent this completely correctable circumstance from happening to you. Once properly diagnosed by the experienced professionals at Nevada Eye Physicians in Las Vegas, Henderson, Boulder City, Mesquite, and Pahrump, NV, you’ll be provided with options for treatment based on your individual condition. These decisions may include simple solutions like utilizing a magnifying lens when reading and applying an anti-reflective coating on your current glasses, or something more involved and immediate like common surgery to remove your clouded lens and replace it with a clear, plastic intraocular lens (IOL). Nevada Eye Physicians will personalize the solution based on what works best for you.
What should I do next?
If you’re reading this, you’re already on your way to achieving better vision. The next step in your path to clearer sight is to contact an optometrist at Nevada Eye Physicians to schedule an appointment today. There’s never been a time like right now to address poor eyesight. We’ll assess your cataract progression and devise a corrective solution to restore your clear vision.