It often goes unnoticed but mild clouding of vision often occurs slowly with advancing age. The clouding of the lens of the eye is called cataracts. The lens is mostly made up of water and protein, arranged in a specific way to keep the lens clear. But in time, the lens becomes cloudy due to clumping of protein. Other vision problems associated with the condition are sensitivity to glare, problems driving at night because headlights seem too bright, problems with glare from the sun or from lamps, loss of colour intensity, changes in the perception of colours, seeing halos around lights, double vision, and frequent changes in eyeglass prescription.
In the initial stages, stronger eyeglass prescriptions can compensate for the poor vision. Better lighting, sunglasses during the day, and the use of magnifying lenses may help people who have an early cataract. However, as vision gets worse, there is no other treatment except surgery.
Cataract surgery involves removing the cloudy lens of the eye and replacing it with an artificial lens. This generally a safe procedure and is very commonly done among the older population.
By replacing the clouded lens with an intraocular lens or UOL, one can enjoy crisper, clearer eyesight. The new lens makes it possible to view the world in its vivid colours and restore the ability to appreciate colours that were previously seen as yellowish in appearance because of cataracts.
After surgery, many people will not need prescription glasses while some may only require reading glasses. New intraocular lenses are particularly made to correct additional vision problems such as short sightedness, long sightedness, astigmatism, and presbyopia. Freedom from glasses is one of the most exciting benefits of cataract surgery.
After surgery, the renewed vision will enable a person to resume doing normal daily activities. It will have a significant impact on someone who wants to stay independent and active. Cataract surgery restores quality vision for countless of patients each year.
Cataract surgery makes it possible to get back to an enjoyable lifestyle. With good vision, overall lifestyle satisfaction is increased.
Age brings on a big hit to self confidence but this can be regained. For people who have experienced depression, there are several concerns that need to be addressed. Having poor vision is one of the major things that can bring negative feelings, stress, and anxiety. With improved vision, self confidence is restored and one will be able to enjoy social activities and community functions. One will be able to improve performance in group activities and mobility is enhanced due to improved vision quality.
As one’s confidence is restored there is a return to independence once more. One feels more confident in the ability to react with the surroundings.
After a successful surgery, the daily activities and hobbies can be enjoyed better. These include reading, watching television, knitting, hobbies and crafts, board games, crosswords, and gardening. If one is able to enjoy hobbies and interests, this translates to better quality of life and lower risk of depression.
There are added health benefits to cataract surgery. This can lead to the diagnosis of other medical conditions of the eye such as diabetic retinopathy which would otherwise go undetected if cataracts are present.
Surgery is recommended especially for symptomatic individuals who are medically fit to go through the procedure. This is suitable even for elderly individuals since it is generally performed with minimal sedation only, therefore it does not put considerable strain to the heart and lungs. In about 30 minutes, the operation is done. Artificial intraocular lenses replace the natural lens of the eye that is removed during surgery.
An appropriate alternative is refractive lens exchange which is essentially a cataract surgery and used as an alternative to LASIK surgery in correcting refractive errors such as myopia and hyperopia. With RLE, the natural lens is replaced with a permanent lens implant that provides additional focusing power for clearer vision. The good thing about artificial lenses is that they will never develop cataracts in the future. Both cataract surgery and RLE are considered lens replacement eye surgery. In the UK, there are many options and one can easily have the procedure at a reputable eye hospital Surrey, Birmingham, and Manchester are some of the places that have renowned eye surgeons and hospitals.