Frequently Asked Questions about Cataracts at Advanced Eye Care Associates
Cataracts are a leading cause of blindness, so it's only natural that you might be worried about this common eye disease. The more you know about cataracts, the more effectively you can guard against them and respond to any symptoms they may cause. Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions about cataracts from your optometry team at Advanced Eye Care Associates in Providence.
What Is a Cataract?
A cataract is an opaque, milky-looking barrier to clear vision. It occurs when lens proteins start to come together, collecting on the lens and blocking the passage of light into the eye.
Are There Different Kinds of Cataracts?
Most cataracts are nuclear cataracts, which form in the exact center of the lens, but some people may develop subcapsular cataracts toward the rear of the lens. Others may develop cortical cataracts, which start at the rim of the lens and work their way inward in spoke-like patterns.
What Causes Cataracts to Form?
Nuclear cataracts are usually considered a natural consequence of aging, although excessive exposure to UV rays can bring them on earlier in life. Subcapsular and cortical cataracts are sometimes associated with steroid drugs or underlying health problems, such as diabetes.
How Do Cataracts Affect Vision?
Most cataracts develop very slowly and may cause no vision changes at first. When symptoms occur, they include halo-like patterns around lights, changes in color vision, reduced night vision, and blurred vision. Progressive lowering of vision can lead to blindness.
How Does an Eye Doctor Diagnose Cataracts?
Any eye doctor on our team can diagnose cataracts through the techniques we use in our comprehensive eye and vision exams. One technique in particular, slit lamp testing, allows us to see even early stage cataracts under magnification.
How Does Your Optometry Center Treat Cataracts?
Our optometry center can help you keep on top of your cataracts' development over the years. We can note the rate of development, recommend health and wellness practices to slow cataract growth, and prescribe corrective lenses to counteract blurriness. If you need surgery to remove a cataract, this procedure can be performed quickly, easily, and painlessly by our eye surgeon.
Can Cataracts Be Prevented?
There's no guaranteed way to prevent cataracts, but you can adopt a number of lifestyle habits to lower your risk. These include giving up smoking, wearing UV-blocking lenses when outdoors, limiting alcohol intake, and eating a balanced diet.
Get More Answers from Our Providence Optometrist
Our Providence optometrist at Advanced Eye Care Associates can answer all of your cataract questions. Call (401) 331-2020 to set up an appointment!