Are you suffering from cataracts? Are you unsure of how best to treat them? Generally, cataracts are treated either through surgery or through corrective glasses or contact lenses. While surgery will usually completely eliminate the cataracts, surgery isn't always the best option. There are many situations in which surgery could be an unnecessary expense and inconvenience. In other cases, though, surgery could be the most effective option. Your optometrist will likely make a recommendation but leave the final decision up to you. Here are a few ways to tell whether surgery is right for your situation:
Your cataracts are interfering with daily life. Your cataract may cause a slight clouding in your vision or it could amplify light. However, it's important to think about whether it's truly interfering in important activities or if it's simply an annoyance. Does the clouding impact your ability to drive? What about reading? Do you have to skip your favorite activities because of your cataracts?
If so, then surgery may be a good solution. The cataracts may have developed beyond the point where glasses are effective. On the other hand, if you're still able to go about your daily life, then surgery may be unnecessary at this time.
Your insurance will cover it. This is often the biggest deciding factor. While most insurance plans cover cataract surgery, it usually depends on the development of the cataract. Many plans won't cover surgery for recently developed cataracts that don't interfere in your life. Other plans have a minimum vision threshold. If your vision is below that level, they'll allow the surgery.
Check with your insurer to see if you qualify. If so, you may want to have the surgery to eliminate the cataracts for good. If not, you could be facing a hefty out-of-pocket bill. Using glasses or contacts could be a more cost-effective solution.
The cataracts are causing other eye conditions. Some cataracts can develop for a long period of time without causing any serious symptoms. You may be able to drive, read, and participate in other activities without much vision trouble at all. However, even cataracts without symptoms can be problematic. The cataract can harden on your lens and cause other conditions, primarily glaucoma. Those conditions can lead to serious vision problems.
In many cases, your optometrist will need to remove the cataracts before he or she can treat the other issues. If your cataracts have developed for a long period of time and are causing other vision conditions, surgery may be a good decision.
Talk to an optometrist, like those at Montgomery Eye Center, about your options. He or she can help you decide on the right treatment for your cataracts.