Family & Community Health & Wellness Lifestyle

What are the first signs of cataracts?

Active Senior Couple On Autumn Walk With Dog On Path Through Countryside
Written by CMN News Service

As we age, our vision changes. Vision may become blurry and faces of loved ones become difficult to see. If you are experiencing these symptoms, you may have cataracts, a natural eye condition that usually forms as we age. If left untreated, cataracts can cause significant vision loss and blindness.

“Our eyes are our windows to the world and no two are the same,” says Dr. Kathy Cao, an ophthalmologist with the Kensington Eye Institute. “It’s so important that everyone is proactive about their eye health, especially if there are changes in their vision.”

Cataracts affect over 2.5 million Canadians every year, but among patients who have cataracts, only 20 percent had a full understanding of their condition. They occur when the lens in the eye becomes cloudy from natural proteins that build up over time, leading to clouded vision, light sensitivity and fading of colours.

The only way to repair cataracts is surgery. Modern cataract surgery is a safe procedure where a surgeon replaces the natural clouded lens of the eye with an artificial lens. Nowadays, there is a variety of surgical lens options available to achieve individual vision goals.

“While every surgery should be carefully considered, cataract surgery is generally safe and done on an outpatient basis, which means patients go home the same day after surgery, and often start to notice vision improvements within a couple of days and may return to regular life activities shortly after,” says Dr. Cao.

If you’re considering cataract surgery, you need to have an informed conversation with your surgeon about your vision goals to select the cataract lens replacement that’s right for you. New innovations in lens technology like Alcon PanOptix Trifocal lenses allows you to see clearly at all distances.

Visit your eye care professional to learn more about cataracts, cataract surgery and lens options. Find more information at

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