Aug 16, 2018 by Gregg Gammello
Cataracts are considered the leading cause of blindness in the world and they primarily affect seniors. Research shows that by the age of 80, more than 50% of seniors in the USA will have had a cataract or cataract surgery. That being said, seniors need to educate themselves on this condition, more so because there are so many myths about cataracts and seniors don’t know what is true.
Contrary to what most seniors think, cataracts don’t grow on the eye. Instead, cataracts are the result of protein fibers that are clomped together and so cloud the eyes’ lenses. This prevents light to pass through the lens and disable reception of a clearly defined image. Some cataracts can be caused by eye injury, overexposure to ultraviolet light, or as a result of diabetes.
2.Blurred vision is the only sign
Blurred vision is the most common symptom of cataracts, but it certainly is not the only one. Apart from blurred vision, people may also experience double vision, extreme sensitivity to light, frequent changes in eyeglass or contact lens treatments, changes in color perception, and increased difficulty with nighttime vision.
3.Cataracts can be prevented.
There is no research on cataract prevention. However, doctors believe that patients can follow steps to reduce the risk of cataracts development. Regular checkups once a year can help recognize the signs of cataracts and other eye diseases. Other steps are incorporating a healthy diet, and quit smoking and drinking, senior home care, and wearing sunglasses with 100% UVA and UVB protection.
4.Cataract surgery may be too dangerous for seniors
Due to technological advancements, cataract surgery is one of the safest medical procedures, having a success rate of 95-98%. These procedures usually require minimal sedation, so seniors older than 60 years can safely undergo the operation. In addition, recovering from this type of a surgery is less difficult when compared to other procedures. The biggest challenge, however, is that patients must not rub their eye(s) and lift heavy objects at least three weeks.
5.Cataracts can return
When a cataract has been removed from the lens, it will not come back, but in the following years, a “secondary” cataract may develop. Still, this can be fixed quickly and safely with a YAG laser capsulotomy.