What is a Cataract?
A cataract is a clouding of the eye’s lens which gradually causes blurring and decrease in vision. The lens helps focus light onto the retina and, as it breaks down, vision will blur and decrease to the point of blindness if untreated.
Who can Have Cataracts?
There are many shapes and causes of cataracts. Age, injury, radiation, poor diet, tobacco usage, eye surgery, as well as other eye conditions such as Retinopathy of Prematurity and Retinitis Pigmentosa. Cataracts are responsible for 50% of blindness and 33% of vision impairment world-wide.
What can People With Cataracts see?
A cataract will usually grow slowly, resulting in gradual changes in vision. Depending on the type of cataract, people may experience blurring, sensitivity to glare, night blindness, rings around lights and decrease in visual acuity or distance vision. Untreated cataracts can cause complete blindness.
Because cataracts have many different causes and can be part of other eye conditions, or indeed part of other impairments such as Downs or Turners Syndrome, any recommendations will need to be based on the individual. Solutions such as Apple’s iPhone may prove useful for those with treatable cataracts because the assistive technology is an integral part of the device and can be activated or deactivated as necessary. Computer-based magnification and speech software may be more useful for those with more permanent conditions.
Talk with Elise and the team to find your best solution.