Of our five senses, it’s hard to imagine one more important than vision. That’s why cataracts, or the clouding of vision as a result of proteins clumping together within the eye lens, is such a huge problem for people of all ages.
Cataracts can be the result of a wide range of lifestyle choices, from smoking regularly to eating poorly and using steroid-based medications. Of course, it’s also closely tied to poor eye health, such as spending too much time in the sun without proper eye protection, like sunglasses, or being exposed to radiation for extended periods of time. But what, exactly, are the signs and symptoms of cataracts? In other words, how can one tell if cataracts may become a serious problem in the near or distant future?
1. Cloudy vision
The most obvious way to determine if the eyes may be affected by cataracts is cloudy vision, or the appearance of fuzzy spots in the field of vision. At first this may seem intermittent or fairly minor, but over time the cloudiness can worsen, making daily activities — like driving, going to work, or looking after the kids — less safe or convenient than before.
If left untreated, cloudy vision resulting from cataracts can result in vision becoming progressively more blurry and dim. This could make it difficult for the patient to safely operate a vehicle or even recognize faces. If you experience cloudy vision, it’s important to see your family doctor or an optometrist as soon as possible.