Your local optometrist in Canberra has told you that you have been diagnosed with cataracts. You vaguely recalled that your parents or friends had cataract surgery not too long ago. With this newly diagnosed eye condition, you think to yourself, are you suitable for cataract surgery?
Your eyes contain a natural lens, like a camera, which helps to keep images in focus. This natural lens changes its shape every time you try to focus on a book, your computer or your phone up close.
As we age, your natural lens loses its ability to change its shape fluidly. This is due to the denser, more rigid, and progressively cloudier natural lens. This is a normal gradual progression of ageing, which is one of the main reasons we require reading glasses as time goes by.
Severe cataracts will impede the quality of vision. A patient with a significant amount of cataracts development will experience blur vision, especially under low light conditions. Some patients with severe cataracts report vision as if they were looking through a very dirty windscreen of your car. Harsh lighting such as very bright daylight or fluorescent lighting can bring about glare, making vision uncomfortable, like someone shining a bright torch towards you.
Is Surgery the Right Option for You?
Cataracts aren’t generally considered urgent surgery. It would be best if you decided whether surgery is the right option for you by considering several factors;
- Vision. It is very common to have cataracts progress slowly to leave your vision relatively unaffected. It is pretty common to see our patients with cataracts still able to see well enough to continue driving. When you visit your optometrist, your optometrist will discuss how your cataracts impact your vision and what can be done to slow down the progression and advice on how your optometrist will monitor its development throughout the years.
- Costs. There will be a time when cataract surgery is necessary to restore vision to where it once was. Your vision and how you use your sight is the main motivator whether or not it is cost beneficial to have the cataract surgery sooner.
- Time. Cataract surgeries are very common, and it carries minimal risk. Your surgeon will discuss the risk and procedure tailored for you for the best possible outcome. You will require a couple of days away from work and general duties whilst recovering from the surgery.
- Type of Cataracts. Sometimes, cataracts are caused by reasons other than normal age-related changes, such as accidents and other medications that can accelerate cataracts’ development. If you have other eye conditions such as glaucoma, having cataracts surgery may be beneficial to control your eye pressure. These options will be discussed during your comprehensive eye examinations with your optometrist.
The Bottom Line
Everyone’s eyes are different. If you think you’ve developed cataracts, the first step is to have your eyes assessed by your optometrist. At Capital Eye, we have the latest diagnostic equipment to understand how certain eye conditions, such as cataracts, can affect your vision. With a deeper understanding of how your eyes are presented, your optometrist will discuss how to manage your cataracts, monitor it yearly to ensure your vision remains unaffected, or organise a surgeon to discuss surgical options.
If you’re looking to book an appointment with us, you can do so online instantly. We look forward to welcoming you to our practice.