A Look at Cataracts With Eye Specialists of Louisiana

Did you know cataracts are the leading cause of vision loss worldwide among people over 40? In fact, according to a study completed at the University of Chicago, cataracts account for approximately 42% of all cases of blindness.

The good news is that with proper diagnosis and prompt treatment, the effects of cataracts can be successfully reversed, restoring clarity and sight for many individuals.

If you or a loved one are living with a cataract, the Eye Specialists of Louisiana team is here to help.

Continue reading to learn more about this vision-related condition below. 

What Is a Cataract?

A cataract is a common eye condition where the eye’s lens becomes cloudy, causing blurry vision.

A cataract often develops slowly and can occur in one or both eyes.

This condition is commonly linked to aging but can also be caused by injury, certain medications, or medical conditions.

As cataracts progress, they can significantly impact vision, making it difficult to perform daily tasks like reading or driving.

Cataract Symptoms

People with cataracts can have different signs and symptoms, and the severity can vary.

The most common symptoms of cataracts include

  • Blurred, clouded, or dim vision
  • Double vision in one or both eyes
  • Increased difficulty seeing at night
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Need for more light when reading or doing other close activities
  • Frequent changes in your corrective lens prescription
  • Fading or yellowing of colors

It is essential to know that when cataracts are small, symptoms tend to be mild or only appear in certain situations.

People who wear corrective lenses like contacts or eyeglasses may mistake these inconsistent early warning signs as a change in vision or chalk it up to being tired.

Paying close attention to changes in your vision is imperative to your overall eye health.

Cataract Risk Factors

Cataracts have many causes, like genetic disorders, certain medications, or medical issues. However, most develop them because of injury or advanced age.

Common risk factors include

  • Increasing age
  • Excessive exposure to sunlight
  • Excessive alcohol use
  • Smoking
  • Previous eye injury, inflammation, or surgery
  • Prolonged use of corticosteroid medications
  • Obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes

How Can I Protect My Eyes From Cataracts?

While there is no proven way to prevent or slow the progression of a cataract, the ophthalmologists at Eye Specialists of Louisiana recommend the following strategies

  • Get regular eye exams
    A comprehensive eye exam is the best way to find eye diseases early when treatment to prevent further damage or vision loss is most effective
  • Manage diabetes
    People with diabetes and unchecked glucose levels can damage the blood vessels in their eyes, which increases the risk of cataracts and other eye conditions.
  • Eat healthy foods
    Eat more antioxidant-rich fruits and leafy green to help maintain the health of your eyes. Also, omega-3 fatty acids (found in many types of fish) reduce the risk of cataract development and progression.
  • Wear sunglasses
    Years of exposure to harmful UVA and UVB sun rays cause the protein in the eye lens to clump and thicken (cataract). Protect your eyes by wearing sunglasses with 100% UVA and UVB protection.
  • Quit smoking
    Smoking increases pressure inside the eye, alters the cells of the lens through oxidation, and leads to an accumulation of heavy metals in the lens, which can accelerate a cataract.
  • Reduce alcohol use
    Alcohol consumption increases the number of free radicals in your body, leading to increased protein in the eye’s lens.

How Are Cataracts Treated?

At Eye Specialists of Louisiana, we specialize in the following cataract treatments:

  • Dropless cataract surgery
    Dropless cataract surgery is the most convenient and advanced technique in surgical eye care today. It consists of a one-time dose of all the medicine the eye needs during the surgery, eliminating the need for weeks of post-surgery eye drops.
  • LenSx cataract surgery
    Unlike a traditional (manual) cataract surgery, the LenSx laser uses a light beam to create precise, repeatable incisions. This helps improve refractive outcomes. It can also be combined with dropless cataract surgery.

Experience Expert Cataract Care in Louisiana

Blurry, foggy, cloudy, or even double vision at any distance are common symptoms of cataracts.

If you or a loved one are experiencing new or worsening cataract symptoms, it’s important to talk to an experienced ophthalmologist about any changes in your vision.

Over time, as the cataract worsens and less light reaches the retina, it becomes harder to see, so prompt diagnosis and treatment are critical.

If you develop sudden changes, like double vision or flashes of light, eye pain, or headaches, visit Eye Specialists of Louisiana immediately for a comprehensive eye exam.

We can help protect your vision and keep it from getting worse.

Schedule an appointment today.