Recognizing Cataract Symptoms

Cataract Symptoms - Hudson Valley, NY

Mar 5, 2018 @ 07:35 AM — by Richard Gordon
Tagged with: Cataract Symptoms | Cataract Surgery | Cataracts |

The lenses in the eyes are normally clear, which helps provide crisp vision. However, if a cataract develops, the lens of the eye becomes cloudy over time, gradually affecting your vision. Recognizing the early signs of cataracts can help make sure you receive treatment before the condition worsens. Today, our doctors at Palisades Laser Eye Center in Hudson Valley, NY, will discuss common cataract symptoms. By knowing what to look for, you can be proactive in your treatment and enjoy a fuller, richer life.

half-blurred photo of two children walking down the street eating ice cream

Cataracts: An Overview

The lens inside the eye is mostly comprised of protein and water. As we age, the protein can cluster together and form a small mass. This mass of protein results in cloudy vision. While a specific cause for cataracts has yet to be determined, many experts believe there are certain risk factors that significantly increase your chances of developing the condition. Some of these factors include obesity, smoking, hypertension, diabetes, eye injury, significant myopia, high alcohol consumption, and genetic predisposition.

In most cases, cataracts develop gradually. Sometimes patients do not even realize there is a problem early on, as their vision is still highly functional. If left untreated, however, cataracts will significantly impede your vision.

Blurred Vision

The most common – and typically the earliest – sign of cataracts is blurred vision. Most patients describe the condition as though they are looking through a frosted windowpane. Images simply are not as crisp as they once were. Some individuals report a yellow hue or faded colors in their vision as well.

Light Sensitivity and the “Halo Effect”

Many patients experience extreme light sensitivity when they develop cataracts. It can become quite difficult to be outside without sunglasses. Additionally, patients may find it increasingly challenging to drive at night, as light fragments, or halos, tend to appear around headlights and street lamps.

A Need for Brighter Lighting

As your vision continues to cloud more and more, brighter lighting will become necessary to perform routine tasks, such as reading, writing, sewing, and other activities. If the condition is left untreated at this point, your vision will only continue to deteriorate. Eventually, cataract surgery will be necessary to correct the problem.

Sudden or Frequent Changes in Your Vision Prescription

Children and teens will often experience frequent changes in their vision prescription. However, adults typically experience fewer fluctuations as they grow older. If you are an adult who has noticed sudden or frequent vision changes, cataracts may be to blame. As the condition worsens, new prescriptions can help for a time. However, cataract surgery will most often be required to adequately address the issue.

Cataract Treatment

To improve vision compromised by cataracts, the doctor will perform surgery in which he or she removes the cloudy lens of the eye and replaces it with a clear intraocular lens. This procedure is remarkably successful, as nine out of ten individuals who undergo the treatment regain vision somewhere between 20/20 and 20/40.

Learn More about Cataract Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

If you notice that your vision is becoming more blurred, or that you require more lighting than you used to, you may have cataracts. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, schedule a consultation at our practice right away. We can help you explore your option and regain clear, crisp vision. Call us at (845) 364-9767 or contact us online.