Did you know more than 2.5 million Canadians have cataracts? With June being declared Cataract Awareness Month, we thought it would be a good idea to highlight the early signs of this eye condition which is the leading cause of blindness in the world according to the World Health Organization.
In its most recent assessment, the World Health Organization (WHO) stated cataracts are responsible for 51 per cent of world blindness. This progressive eye condition is treatable, but the WHO cites barriers to accessing surgery as one of the main reasons why cataracts remain the leading cause of blindness across the globe. With June being Cataract Awareness Month, My Optometrist Calgary is hoping to spread the word about this treatable eye condition and let people know what to look for if they suspect they may be suffering from it.
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What is a cataract?
A cataract is the clouding of the lens of the eye which prevents clear vision. For those who suffer from cataracts, looking through a clouded lens is akin to looking through a fogged up or frosted window. A cataract forms when tissue within the lens of your eye breaks down and clumps together, due to either age-related or medical conditions, or an injury. These clumps cloud your lens, making it difficult to see clearly. As a cataract progresses, the clouding begins to take up more space within your lens and becomes denser. Because a cataract impedes and scatters light as it enters the lens of your eye, a clearly defined image is prevented from being transmitted to the retina. This is why a cataract causes blurry vision.
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Early signs of a cataract
To begin, a cataract may only cause a small amount of cloudiness in your vision, making it difficult for some people to know that they're already experiencing vision loss. As a cataract is a treatable vision condition, it's important to know the early signs and symptoms of this eye disease so it can be addressed as soon as possible. The early signs and symptoms include:
- Blurred, cloudy, or dim vision
- Progressive difficulty seeing at night
- Suddenly being sensitive to light or glare
- Requiring brighter light to read or do other activities
- Regular changes to your eyeglass or contact lens prescription
- Experiencing double vision within one eye
- Colours seem faded or yellowed suddenly
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, or have noticed any changes to your vision, book an appointment with your eye doctor immediately.
In need of an optometrist Calgary? My Optometrist Calgary has a team of wonderful and experienced optometrists that can help you get the vision care you need. Contact us today to schedule your appointment so we can get you seeing clearly again.
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Cataract risk factors
There are a number of things that can increase your risk of developing a cataract including:
- Growing older
- Too much exposure to sunlight
- Being overweight or obese
- High blood pressure
- A previous eye injury or eye surgery
- Excessive alcohol consumption
t's important that you eliminate as many of these risk factors as you can. With cataracts being the leading cause of blindness in the world, taking any steps we can to decrease the likelihood of developing this eye condition or mitigating its development is of paramount importance. By working together, we can help the whole world see more clearly.
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If you're looking for the best optometrist in Calgary, search no more. Contact one of our My Optometrist Calgary clinics at either 403-256-0606 (Health First Optometry), 403-291-0923 (Sunridge Vision Centre), or 403-443-2040 (Three Hills Optometry).