Cataracts are the leading cause of blindness and this explains why cataract surgery is the most widely performed eye procedure. According to statistics, cataract prevalence is responsible for 47.8% to 51% of worldwide blindness. While this is because to a greater extent, it is a normal result of aging, it also affects many young people with serious medical conditions and eye injuries.
Aside from impairing your vision, cataracts severely affect your lifestyle. The more the condition progresses, the more it compromises your lifestyle. When it gets to a point where your vision is impaired, your eye doctor will recommend cataract surgery to rectify the condition. Cataract surgery is a simple procedure that is done as a day-case and it successfully restores vision.
It simply involves the replacement of your cloudy lens with an artificial lens. Unlike the natural lens, the artificial lens does not change with time. You will therefore not require another replacement since it will last for a lifetime. The entire procedure takes about 20 minutes or less and it is done under local anesthesia.
Cataracts start with subtle effects that you may not notice until it significantly compromises your eyesight. While the best way to tell if you have cataracts is to visit an ophthalmologist as the eye experts recommend, you should watch out for the following signs:
- Double vision
- Poor vision at night
- Blurred vision
- Catching glares and halos
- Difficulty in driving and reading
- High sensitivity to lights
Aside from improving your vision, what are the other benefits of choosing to undergo cataract surgery?
1. Improved self-confidence
The worst thing about having cataracts is that it robs your self-confidence. With the difficulty in carrying out basic daily tasks, you lose confidence in your ability to do anything. Everything you once enjoyed and found it easy to do becomes a burden. As a result, this can lead to depression which greatly affects mental well-being. After undergoing cataract surgery, this challenge is eliminated and confidence in performing even the tasks you could not do before is enhanced.
2. More independence
Cataracts severely affect eyesight, making it very hard to do anything. This means the patient must rely on others for help. With time, you feel like a burden and may stop doing a lot of things because you may not want to bother people. Many patients end up enduring a lot of discomfort because asking for help seems difficult. Can you imagine how hard it becomes if there is no one around to help you at a given time? Cataract surgery will help regain your independence by correcting your vision. You will be able to do everything for yourself and even enjoy social activities like before.
3. Improved quality of life
Vision is integral in enjoying every aspect of life. According to research and studies, individuals who undergo cataract surgery experience a 36 percent increment increase in quality of life. Compared to patients who did not have the surgery, individuals who have had the surgery enjoy life and have minimal chances of suffering from depression and anxiety. Cataract surgery improves the lives of many patients who had previously stopped enjoying life due to vision impairment and ended up in isolation.
Loss of visual acuity because of severe cataracts compromises your safety. The odds of falling as you navigate your house is increased. This often causes fractures and other serious injuries that might lead to hospitalization. A study carried out in 2012 over a period of one year indicated that elderly people who had cataract surgery had a 16 percent decrease in hip fractures.
Aside from that, cataracts make it very difficult to drive especially at night. This risks the life of the patient and those of other people on the road. Having a cataract operation will ensure that you and other drivers stay safe while you are driving because it enhances your vision.
5. Greater social inclusion And Improved enjoyment of social activities and hobbies
If you are an individual who loves social activities, cataracts will affect your ability to take part and enjoy such events. This directly affects the quality of your life. Undergoing cataract surgery will ensure that you regain your ability to engage in social events and enjoy your hobbies. Many patients who have cataract surgery report that they are happy because they do not have to be isolated anymore.
You also get to enjoy every activity with your loved ones. Imagine having kids who cherish spending quality time with you playing and not being able to do that because of vision loss? Losing your eyesight not only affects you but also those around you. Cataract surgery will alleviate these social issues and ensure you participate and enjoy life with your loved ones.
6. Longer life
Cataract surgery not only improves your vision but also surprisingly enables you to enjoy a longer life. A study that was published in 2013 after a long-term research linked cataract surgery to high odds of longer life among older people. The study indicates that individuals who undergo surgery have a 40 percent reduction in mortality rate.
Cataracts cannot heal on their own. It takes surgery to rectify the lens and restore your vision. Contrary to the belief that cataracts only affect your vision, it affects many aspects of life. It leads to a decline in daily basic activities due to vision impairment. It takes cataract surgery to reset the patient’s vision and reverse these effects.