Role of an optometrist in Cataract management
A cataract is the clouding of the natural lens in the eye. When the lens becomes cloudy, vision blurs and colours are distorted. Generally, cataracts are a natural result of ageing. There are possibilities that cataracts could also be caused by eye injuries, certain systemic diseases, previous infection, inflammation of the eye, prolonged steroid usage, and congenital in some rare cases. Babies may be born with a congenital cataract.
If you have been diagnosed with a cataract, frequent visits to your optometrist become mandatory for a change in prescription for cataract management.
Cataracts require surgeries at the later stage only. At the later stages of cataract, it becomes difficult to carry out daily activities such as driving, reading, and writing at the later stages of cataract. At the later stages of cataract, vision impairment begins to limit you. Your optometrist will discuss your surgery options and will further help in monitoring your cataracts.
ROLE OF AN OPTOMETRIST IN CATARACT MANAGEMENT
Your optometrist needs to know about eye health history and any genetic eye conditions in the family. Gathering information about your eye health is crucial. Your optometrist may also ask about previous eye surgeries, previous diagnoses or radiation therapy for your head and neck. Your optometrist must know about the symptoms you have been experiencing the consistency and frequency of your symptoms lately. All the information shared, and a comprehensive eye exam will determine the extremity of the cataract also develop what steps to take to manage the cataract.
- COMPREHENSIVE EYE EXAM:
Eye exams are imperative for ocular health. Comprehensive eye exams are crucial after you have received a cataract diagnosis. With a cataract, our vision gradually declines. Regular eye exams help us regulate the rate at which changes will affect the lens. As well as any changes in your prescription. Your optometrist performs a visual acuity test to know the difference in your prescription. Another test is the tonometry test to check the pressure within your eye, and for a closer eye inspection, a slit lamp test is conducted. These tests determine the overall health of your eye, and they make sure that other eye diseases such as glaucoma are not present.
- YOUR OPTOMETRIST CAN REFER YOU TO AN OPHTHALMOLOGIST:
Once your optometrist has known all about your cataracts’ extremity and knows what measures to take in diminishing or reducing the symptoms, they will refer you to an ophthalmologist for cataract surgery. Surgery for cataracts is not required until your cataracts are extreme enough to restrict you from daily activities like reading, writing and driving. Or also if your cataracts are interfering with the optometrist’s ability to monitor your other eye conditions. If you have been diagnosed with a mild cataract, holding back the surgery will not harm your eyes. And if it is impairing your vision, you may require a new prescription instead of surgery.