“Eye Care” For You | www.savannahtribune.com | Savannah Tribune

Some people think that a cataract is a growth of tissue visible on the outside of the eyes. Instead…, a cataract is a clouding of the lens inside the eyes. The lens works like a camera lens, focusing light onto the back of the eyes. The lens also allows us to focus on things up close and far away.

The lens is mostly made of water and protein. As we age, the protein clumps together. This causes the lens to become clouded. Over time this clouding progresses, thus making it harder to see clearly. Glare is reported and colors begin to appear faded. Some say it’s like looking thru a wax paper film. This is a cataract.

Cataracts are mostly an age-related change that occurs after age 55. However, cataracts can also be present at birth (congenital cataracts) or can occur as a result of an eye injury (traumatic cataracts). Cataracts can also be caused by diabetes or can result from longterm use of steroids.

When your doctor determines that cataract surgery is required, the internal lens is removed from the eye and replaced with a lens implant. Surgery is only done on one eye at a time. The vision after having cataract surgery is most often much better (provided there are no other health or eye problems). For some, glasses may no longer be required after having surgery.

When was your last eye exam? If you are over 55 and have not been examined in the last year, you need to be checked for cataracts. A comprehensive dilated eye examination can determine this. Your doctor should perform a color vision test and check the internal health of your eyes. If cataracts are found, but you do not require surgery, close monitoring is required to determine how long it will take your cataracts to progress.

Curated from “Eye Care” For You | www.savannahtribune.com | Savannah Tribune