What is a cataract?
A cataract is a discoloration and clouding of the natural lens in your eye. The normal function of this lens is to focus light rays on the retina, to produce a sharp and clear image of what we see. When cataracts develop, your lens becomes a barrier to light and acts like a "window shade" drawn in front of the retina, resulting in blurry vision. Cataracts usually form as part of the normal aging process, but may be seen in younger age groups as the result of genetics, certain diseases, medications, or eye injuries.
The clouding of the lens can occur in any area of the lens, and the location and density of the "cloud" determines the amount of vision loss. There are no medications, eye drops, exercises or glasses that will cause cataracts to disappear once they have formed. Initially, a change in your eyeglass prescription may help to improve your vision if the blurring is mild. As the cataract develops, however, the blurriness may keep you from doing the things you like to do such as reading, driving, and watching television. At this time, surgery is the only way to remove a cataract and to restore vision.
How do I know if I have a cataract?
Some common symptoms of cataracts include:
- Blurry or foggy vision
- Glare (particularly with night-time driving)
- Difficulty with watching television
- Difficulty with reading
The only way to effectively treat cataracts is with cataract surgery. There are no eyedrops or pills that can reverse the effects of a cataract. At the Eye Treatment Center we have restored vision in thousands of patients requiring cataract surgery in the Long Beach, Los Angeles, and Orange County areas.