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What is a Cataract?

The eye’s lens is responsible for helping focus light on the retina in the back of the eye. A cataract forms when proteins within the lens begin to cluster together, causing the lens to cloud. If the lens is cloudy, it cannot properly focus the image on the retina. This makes vision blurry and colors indistinct. When your lifestyle is threatened by a cataract, it is time to consult the doctors at Augusta Eye MD about your options.

Why does a cataract develop?

What causes the lens to cloud? In most cases, the culprit is the normal aging process. If you are age 65 or older, you probably have a cataract, but it may not have progressed to the point that it affects your vision. Certain lifestyle choices and relatively common health conditions, like diabetes, may hasten cataract development. Nutrition may play at least a limited role. Some research suggests that antioxidant vitamins, like vitamin A (beta-carotene), vitamins C and E, and selenium, may slow cataract development. All of these are available in common multivitamin formulas. Beyond that, the use of nutritional supplements carries its own risks; you should consult your physician before adding them to your diet.

Are cataracts inevitable?

If you live long enough, you will almost certainly develop cataracts, because they are part of the normal aging process. However, studies suggest accumulated exposure to ultraviolet light causes the natural lens to cloud, and that certain lifestyle choices and relatively common health conditions, like diabetes, hasten cataract development.

What are the symptoms of cataracts?

Cataracts do NOT generally cause pain, discomfort, redness, discharge, or sudden, alarming vision changes that would lead you to seek immediate help. The changes caused by cataracts—blurry vision and indistinct colors—generally develop so slowly that you won’t notice them until they are serious enough to affect your normal lifestyle.

What do I do if I’m concerned about cataracts?

Call 706-922-6000 to schedule a consultation at Augusta Eye MD. We’ll exam your eyes to determine whether cataract surgery is the best way to restore clear vision.

Learn about traditional and laser-assisted cataract surgery.