Cataract is an eye condition where the lens of the eye becomes progressively opaque and results in blurred vision. It generally happens to people when they start getting older and can happen in single or both eyes. It clouds the eye lens, which is responsible for the clear projection of light on the retina for sharp view.
Types of Cataract
- Secondary cataract
- Traumatic cataract
- Congenital cataract
- Radiation cataract
Causes and effects of cataract on a person
The lens of the eye focuses the light on the retina where the images are produced by converting light into nerve signals for brain. Its main constituents are water and protein among which the latter is responsible for keeping the lens clear by specific arrangement and letting the light in. During aging, these proteins form a cluster together and darken the vision, causing cataract.
If it is not cured at earlier stage, the cluster becomes bigger and makes it hard for the patient to see clearly. According to studies, diabetes, exposure to sunlight and smoking have also been held responsible for causing cataract.
The effects of cataract include decrease in the sharpness of image created at retina, appearance of brownish hue in the vision and lens discoloration to the point where people can’t differentiate between two colors.
How to cure cataract
You can take certain precautions to prevent or at least delay cataract. Try not to let yourself exposed to sunlight for long duration. Also, wear sunglasses and hat to cover your eyes from the UV rays. Eliminate your smoking habit and consume diet rich in nutrients such as green vegetables, fruits and antioxidants.
If the cataract is severe, then the only option is to get the best cataract surgery available for your condition. The surgery is done by removing the opaque lens and putting artificial lens in its place.
Get the surgery when you feel that cataract is interfering with your daily activities by causing too much vision loss. Consult your eye doctor and discuss the benefits as well as risks involved in the surgery. You can take your time to decide whether you want to have a surgery or not since its delay would not cause any lasting damage to the eye.
In case, both eyes need a cataract surgery, each one of them is treated at separate occasions with the difference of 4-8 weeks. Try to detect cataract by searching for its symptoms such as blurred or multiple vision, glare, frequent change in prescriptions, etc. Conduct eye tests such as visual acuity test, tonometry and dilated eye exam.
Your doctor will examine your eye by doing some tests 1-2 weeks before the surgery. The tests consist of evaluating corneal curvature and eye structure. This helps in the suitable selection of the artificial lens, otherwise known as intraocular lens.
Its duration is about 1 hour and is painless in nature. It is your choice to stay awake or sleep during the surgery. In order to protect the treated eye, a patch is put on it. You might feel extra sensitivity, itching, some discomfort and fluid discharge as the after-effects of the surgery, which would fade away after 1-2 days. You can use the prescribed eye drops for faster healing and preventing possible infection.
Cataract surgery has high success rate and you need not worry about the vision. Once the treated eye comes in sync with the other one, your vision will become normal. Your doctor will monitor you by scheduling appointments to make sure that your eye is healing properly.