Thursday, August 7, 2014

Cataract Awareness Important for Seniors

Developing an awareness of cataracts and cataract symptoms is important for seniors as we observe that poor vision in seniors is often associated with premature or accelerated mental decline and creates challenges in terms of mobility and safety that can also put patients at increased risk for orthopedic injury-especially hip fracture. So, helping seniors restore vision with cataract surgery has an important place in securing senior health, well being, mobility, safety and mental state.

More than 20 million Americans age 40 and older have cataracts and more than half of all Americans over 65 have some degree of cataract development. In fact cataracts are a leading cause of vision loss among seniors.

A cataract is a clouding of the crystalline lens of the eye preventing light rays from passing through it easily. This results in a clouding and blurring of vision. Patients should understand that cataracts are not a growth or a film over the eye. For many patients cataracts start out slowly and have little effect on vision at first. But, as the cataract becomes denser, so does the impact on vision. The most common symptoms that bother patients with cataracts can include blurring of vision, sensitivity to light and glare, double vision in one eye, poor night vision, fading or yellowing of colors and frequent changes in glasses or contact lens prescriptions.

When cataracts begin to interfere with daily activities or with patient comfort, mobility and safety, they can be treated with cataract surgery. Cataract surgery is one of the safest and most frequently performed surgeries in the United States. Today, we have a full range of lens implants available that allow us to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism and even near vision problems after cataract surgery, as well as distance vision, without requiring bifocals or reading glasses for the vast majority of patients.

If you or someone you know has a question about cataracts, cataract surgery, lens implants or driving please feel free to call Northwest Indiana Eye & Laser Center at 219-464-8223, or visit Northwest Indiana Eye & Laser Center or facebook.com/nwindianaeyeandlaser to schedule an appointment.

Northwest Indiana Eye & LaserCenter offices are located at 522 Marquette Street, Valparaiso, Indiana 46383 and 1001 South Edgewood Drive, Knox, Indiana 46354 to schedule an appointment.