Cataracts are one of the most common eye conditions. As we age, cataracts can develop slowly as the lens of the eye loses flexibility. Water and protein in the lens clump up over time, and the lens becomes cloudy, no longer allowing light to pass through. Cataracts can cause vision loss, but they can be cured by surgical removal.
Most people know that cataracts cause blurred vision, but there are several other symptoms of cataracts that may not be as well-known:
- Double Vision: Diplopia, or double vision, can occur when you look only through one eye. This is different than double vision that is caused by improper alignment of the eyes.
- Color Changes: When you have cataracts, colors may appear faded or dull. Objects may look yellowish or brownish, too. As the cataract develops, it may be difficult to decipher between blue and purple.
- Second Sight: Interestingly, the cataract can actually seem to make your near vision better. You may, for a time, not need reading glasses, and you may think that your eyes are getting stronger. As the cataract advances, this improvement will disappear.
- Glares and Halos: Because cataracts make vision cloudy, it seems that brighter light would make vision easier. Actually, bright light creates worse conditions. This is especially true at night. Headlights and street lights can cause glare and make night driving dangerous.
Although cataracts are mostly related to the aging process, people of all ages can have cataracts. Babies can even develop cataracts (congenital cataracts). Even children can get cataracts as a result of illness or trauma. Smoking, alcohol use, diabetes, trauma, and corticosteroid use have all been tied to the development of cataracts (Source: Medicine.net).
If you have questions about cataracts, talk to your ophthalmologist and schedule a comprehensive eye exam. A short examination can diagnose cataracts or other vision problems that may be keeping you from having clear eyesight. Don’t delay in making your appointment. Make the call today!