Cataract Facts

Talking to your patients about cataracts is important. And, most likely, a very common subject matter within your practice.

Check out this easy overview of the most frequently asked questions about cataracts, including potential cataract treatment and congenital cataracts.

What Are Cataracts?

Let your patients know that cataracts are a clouding of the eye’s natural lens and are the most common cause of vision issues in the world. As per Prevent Blindness America, more than 22 million Americans have cataracts! Ease your patients’ minds by letting them know cataracts are very common , and very treatable.

Who Gets Cataracts?

Inform patients that cataracts typically begin to form in people over the age of 40. However, it is typically after age 60 that cataracts cause problems with vision.

What Are the Signs or Symptoms of Cataracts?

As an eye care professional, you will want to inform your patients that cataracts start small and thus have little to no effect on their vision at first. However, folks begin to notice symptoms once the cataract is larger, wider and more strongly developed.

Symptoms of Having Cataracts Include:

  • Blurry vision
  • Cloudy or foggy vision
  • The sensation that light from the sun or a lamp feels too bright or glaring, and causes discomfort
  • More and stronger glare from oncoming car headlights while driving
  • Colors start to appear more dim or faded

Cataract Causes: What Are They?

As you most likely know, patients want and need simple answers to their healthcare questions. Of course, they should get the right answers and complete answers – but easily understandable answers are best.

When a patient asks how cataracts are caused, you can let them know that as we age the natural protein in our eyes tend to clump together; this “clump” of proteins then covers a small area of the eye’s lens. Over time the clump can grow larger and cloud more of the lens. The cloud is what we refer to as a cataract.

When Patients Ask if Cataracts Can Be Prevented…

This is a question that shows a patient is involved and interested in their eye health! Should this question be presented to you, you can simply answer that cataracts are a common part of the aging process and there is not anything that can be done to prevent the potential growth of cataracts.

However, there are a number of things that your patients can try in order to reduce the risk of developing cataracts. Nutrients such as vitamin E and vitamin C are believed to reduce cataract risk. Eating a healthy and well-balanced diet can help. What’s more, wearing sunglasses that block 100 percent of UV rays can reduce cataract risk.

When Patients Ask About Cataract Treatment…

Let your patients know that cataract treatment can vary from person to person depending on their particular diagnosis. For example, when symptoms first begin to appear patients may simply be given new, stronger prescription glasses.

Should the cataract progress far enough to impede vision, cataract surgery will become an option. As the most frequently performed surgical procedure in the United States, cataract surgery is very successful!


Five Amazing Devices That Help People with Low Vision

It’s a fact: for those with visual impairments, simply doing the most basic chores around the house can be troublesome. Even more than that, low vision individuals suffer from the inability to comfortably and easily read – and that includes books, computer screens, medical prescription instructions, food labels, signboards, and the list goes on.

Fortunately, Tech Advancements Have Created Amazing New Devices Designed to Make Daily Seeing and Reading Activities Simpler!

Whether at home or on the go – and no matter if it’s a medicine label, product label, a watch or clock, and more – rest assured there is a special helping aid to help you see better.  Boost your independence and quality of life! Check out these five incredibly helpful products made to help you lessen your daily low vision issues:

Ott-Lite WingShade 18-Watt Floor Lamp

Flexible, rotating floor lamps are one of the most convenient devices for illuminating a desk space, a book, or any other working space. features high contrast, low heat, low glare illumination that enhances visual acuity and helps reduce eyestrain. This WingShade 18-Watt Floor Lamp offers total adjustability with a flex neck to direct the illumination exactly where you need it.

It is lightweight and portable so you can easily carry it from your study area to garage – and anywhere in your home where you need it! Rotate the lamp, too, in order to perfectly illuminate anything you want to read or work on. 18-watt, 10,000- hour rated tube has an output of 810 lumens!

Braille Slate with Clipboard

This Braille Slate with Clipboard set helps the blind and visually impaired create neat, clearly written sentences more quickly and easily. It features a 37-cell, 4-line aluminum Braille writing slate with raised tabs and a durable wooden clipboard with 7 holes on each side.

Simply clip paper to board and place Braille writing slate on top, fitting tabs on slate into holes on clipboard. Write a line, then slide the slate down into the next hole for neat, clearly written sentences.

Fit-Over Sunglasses

What to do when you step outside and the blazing sunlight shines right into your eyes, making it more difficult to see properly?

Fit-Over Sunglasses are just the right thing for this issue!

Designed to be worn over large oval and rectangular shaped prescription eyewear frames, these specially designed sunglasses provide maximum UV protection from every angle. Hard-coated PDX polarized lenses and side shields completely block blinding glare, providing extraordinary visual clarity, natural color definition and enhanced contrast.

Features PDX Amber colored lenses, polarized side shields, wrap around 100-percent UVA and UVB protection, hypo-allergenic crystal nylon frame – and even helps to prevent cataracts!

* Velcro carrying case with sport clip
* Detachable neck cord
* Micro-fiber cleaning cloth

Glare is a common symptom in low vision conditions such as cataracts and age-related macular degeneration (AMD). It significantly hinders the ability to see or read outdoors. With special Fit-Over Sunglasses, you can have the vision relief you want and need!

Max Auto Touch LED Handheld Magnifier

According to the AAO, nearly 14.2 million people in the US aged 40 or older are hyperopic (farsighted). For people with farsightedness, an illuminated magnifier can be an incredibly helpful reading device.

The ultimate in convenience, the Max Auto Touch LED Handheld Magnifier provides powerful magnification plus Auto Touch technology that turns the built-in LED light on as soon as you pick it up, so there’s no on/off switch to deal with!

The Max Auto Touch 3x, 9-diopter LED Illuminated Magnifier with its 3.27 in. x 2.32 in. (83mm x 59mm) rectangular bi-aspheric lens offers a large, low-distortion field of view and uniform LED light across the lens, for an easier reading experience. Its ergonomic handle conforms to the natural shape of the hand, making it comfortable to use for longer periods and easier for the arthritic and those with limited dexterity to hold.

What’s more, the Max Auto Touch is extra lightweight and features an auto touch on/off switch in the handle that automatically turns the LED on when you pick it up, and off when you put it down.

Now that’s some awesome and helpful technology!

Full Sheet Magnifier

Think of a Full Sheet Magnifier as your personal tablet computer, allowing you to finally see text with increased visual clarity and brilliance. 

These magnifiers are compact, lightweight, and portable so that you can easily read books, documents, newspapers, labels, do crafting, and more. To skim easily across any text, simply hover the magnifier over the text and it will show you the same page/object in a sharp and vivid view.

The magnifying power varies across different devices, so choose the device that best works for your needs.

April is Women’s Eye Health and Safety Month

It’s a fact: women are at higher risk than men are for vision impairments such as low vision and blindness, yet they are less likely to seek out and receive treatment.

That’s why April has been declared Women’s Eye Health and Safety Month.

This Month, Educate – and Help Save the Sight of – Your Female Patients  

According to a recent report from The Lancet Global Health Commission on Global Eye Health, the gender imbalance can be attributed to demographic factors, such as women living longer than men – and also social factors, such as women having reduced access to proper eye care.

According to the Society for Women’s Health Research (SWHR), the following diseases of the eye occur more frequently in women:
Refractive Error – 26 percent more women than men over the age of 12 have uncorrected visual impairment due to refracted error
Dry Eye – Two times more women than men over the age of 50 have dry eye disease
Age-related Macular Degeneration – 65 percent of individuals in the United States with Age-related Macular Degeneration are women
Cataracts – 61 percent of individuals in the United States with cataract are women
Glaucoma – 67 percent of individuals in the United States with glaucoma are women
Thyroid Eye Disease (TED) – TED is 5-6 times more common in women than men

Empower Women’s Eye Health

This month, and every month of the year, empower your female patients with knowledge, skills, and confidence to be advocates for their own vision and eye health.

“Permanent vision loss from many eye diseases and conditions can be lessened if problems are diagnosed and treated early. That’s why it’s so important for women to make their own eye health a priority to help avoid preventable vision issues in the near and distant future.,” said Jeff Todd, president and CEO of Prevent Blindness.” For more information on women’s eye health, including fact sheets on eye diseases and eye protection, please visit Prevent Blindness offers a free listing of financial assistance services in English and Spanish at:

Share This Info with Your Female (and Male!) Patients
Here is a list of contact information for organizations and services that provide financial assistance for vital vision care:

The American Academy of Ophthalmology EyeCare America® Program
P.O. Box 429098
San Francisco, CA 94142-9098
Phone: (877) 887-6327

EyeCare America provides eye care to US citizens and legal residents, often at no out-of-pocket cost to those who qualify.

Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry
6110 Executive Boulevard, Suite 510
Rockville, Maryland 20852
Phone: (301) 231-5944

Many optometry schools offer low to no-cost care to people willing to be treated by supervised students. They also provide free care to people who join research studies.

The HealthWell Foundation
P.O. Box 489
Buckeystown, MD 21717
Phone: (800) 675-8416

The HealthWell Foundation provides financial assistance to eligible individuals to cover co-insurance, co-payments, healthcare premiums and deductibles for certain treatments.

Good Days
6900 N. Dallas Parkway, Suite 200
Plano, TX 75024
Toll-free Patient Info: (877) 968-7233
Main: (972) 608-7141

Good Days provides financial support by covering prohibitively costly co-pays for those with life-altering eye conditions, allowing them to receive treatment without destroying their finances.

243 N. Lindbergh Blvd., Floor 1
St. Louis, MO 63141
Phone: (888) 396-EYES (3937)

InfantSEE optometrists provide no-cost comprehensive eye and vision assessment for infants within the first year of life – regardless of a family’s income or insurance coverage.

Post Office Box 219
Gloucester, MA 01930
Phone: (978) 865-4115

NeedyMeds offers important information directly from eye medicine manufacturers regarding special programs to assist people who can’t afford to buy the necessary eye disease drugs they need.

Mission Cataract USA
6716 N. Cedar Avenue
Suite 212
Fresno, California 93710
Phone: (800) 343-7265

Coordinated by the Volunteer Eye Surgeon’s Association, this program provides free cataract surgery to people of all ages who have no Medicare, Medicaid, third party insurance, or any other means to pay for needed cataract surgery.

New Eyes for the Needy
549 Millburn Avenue
Post Office Box 332
Short Hills, NJ 07078
Phone: (973) 376-4903

New Eyes provides a basic pair of single or lined bifocal lenses. A New Eyes voucher is for individuals who have no other resources with which to obtain a basic pair of eyeglasses. Applicants must have an eye exam including their pupillary distance (PD) measurement before applying.

OneSight’s Eyeglass Referral Program
Phone: (888) 935-4589

Through OneSight’s Eyeglass Referral Program, eligible patients can receive glasses free of charge.

Prism Spectacles Designed To Help Your Low Vision Patients  

As an eye care professional who treats patients with low vision, helping your patients to more easily engage in important everyday tasks such as reading and writing is at the heart of what you do.  

Our Products Are Designed to Help Low Vision Patients Make the Most of What They See!

SeeMoreVision’s line of high-quality prismatic glasses are for professional dispensing only. They let your patients use their hands more freely as they read books, newspapers and labels and while doing other close-up work.

Prismatic Spectacles 12D with 14 Base in Prism 48mm Frame Brown

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