If Your Loved One is Experiencing Vision Problems It May Be Time for a Cataract Exam

Senior woman getting her vision checked by an eye doctor in Edmonton, AB

How would someone know if it’s time for a cataract exam? If there’s blurred or double vision, eyeglasses don’t make an improvement, and daily activities are affected, a professional cataract exam is needed! Cataracts, left untreated, continue to worsen and may lead to blindness. Still, they’re a common struggle for over 24 million people. Preventative exams and adequate medical care are vital to prevent the downward spiral.

 

Cataracts are an extremely common challenge. They cause a clouding of the lens, blocking proper light from entering the eye, thus diminishing vision. Although cataracts don’t create pain, they do create big problems for anyone trying to maintain independence. Because cataracts can cause night vision problems, like blurring, or a halo effect around lights, someone affected may have to stop driving until after surgery and full recovery. Colors may appear dull and hard to identify, even when wearing corrective eyeglass prescriptions. Without treatment, the eyes can begin to look cloudy or discolored and may actually become visible to others.

 

The medical community doesn’t fully understand what triggers cataracts, besides the natural effects of aging. However, factors that may contribute to cataracts include the following:

  • Diabetes

  • Smoking

  • Eye injury, specific diseases, or inflammation

  • Exposure to UV rays

  • Hereditary factors

  • Using steroids for extended periods of time

  • Events that occur prior to birth, such as an illness the mother has when pregnant

 

So, what should we do to prevent cataracts? Start with wearing sunglasses with UV-protection on sunny days. In addition, quit smoking, get more exercise, and eat leafy green veggies. See an eye doctor regularly so cataracts can be identified quickly, and the best measures can be implemented to protect vision.

 

Eye surgery to remove cataracts is not rare in the U.S. Over 2 million procedures are performed annually with a success rate of over 95%. More good news is that recovery time is typically a few days, although complete healing takes up to a month. During this recovery, the family may be concerned about how they can assist their loved one. The patient might benefit from a professional caregiver to assist them with daily activities for these weeks. When an older adult has help with housekeeping chores, meal preparation or errands, they can regain a sense of competence. Caregivers can even provide transportation for follow-up medical appointments!

 

Contact Comfort Keepers of Edmonton today and ask about the professional in-home care that could be helpful to a cataract patient after surgery.

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