Most cataracts are caused by the normal ageing process.
Most cataracts are caused by the normal ageing process, so if you live long enough you will develop cataracts. Eye trauma, smoking, ultraviolet light exposure and some chronic diseases, such as diabetes or medications, may contribute to accelerated cataract formation.
Early cataracts may not affect your vision at all, however as they get worse over time you may notice:
- Needing to update your glasses or contact lenses more frequently
- Cloudy or blurred vision; for example, more trouble reading small print
- Faded colours
- Glare symptoms where sunlight or car lights appear too bright
- Difficulty with night vision
Vision problems caused by early cataracts may be improved by new glasses, brighter lighting, sunglasses or magnifying lenses. Unfortunately there are no eye drops, medications, eye exercises or laser procedures to treat cataracts or stop them from getting worse.
Once a cataract becomes severe enough to impact your vision and interfere with your ability to do the things you’d like to do, surgery to remove the cataract and replacing it with a clear, artificial intraocular lens (IOL), will be the best option.