There are many different eye care issues that people have to face throughout their lives. This should come as no surprise given the complexity of the eyes. Refractive errors such as myopia (nearsightedness) and hyperopia (farsightedness) are quite common and easy to diagnose, for instance, while eye conditions such as glaucoma may be more difficult to detect and treat. One common eye problem that people face as they grow older is cataracts. You may have heard about them before or had a relative who’s had them, but you may still be unsure as to what they are exactly.
When you come to Chicago Cornea Consultants, we will be sure to perform a comprehensive eye examination to screen for various eye problems. All of the doctors at our 3 convenient locations have the knowledge and expertise to identify and effectively treat your eye health issues.
We’d like to take a moment right now to look at the issue of cataracts. We’ll briefly cover the basics: what cataracts are, what causes cataracts, what symptoms patients face, and what treatments are available.
Cataracts occur when the proteins within the lens of the eye begin to clump together. This leads to a clouding of the lens that results in blurriness, haziness, and other forms of vision impairment. It’s estimated that half of all Americans will develop cataracts by the time they turn 80.
There are many different causes of cataracts. Advanced age is the most common cause, and cataracts most commonly form in people over the age of 40. Yet there are other causes you should be aware of as well so you can reduce the chances of cataracts forming.
One cause of cataracts other than age is ultraviolet radiation. Too much sun exposure is bad for your skin as well as your eyes, so in addition to wearing sun block, be sure to wear sunglasses as well. Any injuries or trauma to the eye can cause cataracts to form as well, so it’s best to wear protective eyewear in cases where your eyes might be harmed. People with diabetes are more likely to develop cataracts, and indeed, health problems related to weight and diet can also increase the chances of developing cataracts. Finally, we cannot stress enough that smoking and excessive alcohol consumption both increase your chances of developing cataracts, so please quit smoking and drink responsibly and in moderation.
Treatment for cataracts is relatively simple, all things considered. The first step is the removal of the clouded lens. After this is completed, you will have the lens replaced with an artificial lens. One possibility is The Alcon ReSTOR multifocal IOL, and another is the Crystalens&™ intraocular lens implant (IOL). There are other lens implants are available, however, so you will be able to discuss which one might be best for you with a member of our team.
For more information about cataracts, cataract surgery, and other vision-related health questions, be sure to contact our Chicago refractive surgery and eye care centers today. All of us at Chicago Cornea Consultants, Ltd. look forward to meeting you in person.