What are the Symptoms of Cataracts and Glaucoma?

Cataracts and glaucoma are two different eye conditions, each with its own set of symptoms.


Cataracts are a common age-related eye condition in which the lens of the eye becomes cloudy, leading to blurred or impaired vision. The symptoms of cataracts can include:

  • Blurred Vision: Vision becomes progressively cloudy, making it difficult to see fine details.
  • Diminished Color Perception: Colors may appear faded or less vibrant than usual.
  • Increased Sensitivity to Glare: Bright lights, such as headlights at night or sunlight during the day, may cause discomfort or glare.
  • Difficulty Seeing at Night: Night vision may be particularly affected, making it challenging to drive at night.
  • Frequent Changes in Prescription Glasses: Individuals with cataracts may find that their glasses prescription needs to be updated frequently to maintain clear vision.
  • Double Vision: Cataracts can cause double vision or ghosting of images in one eye.

Cataracts tend to develop slowly over time, and the symptoms can progress gradually. If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s important to see an eye doctor for a comprehensive eye exam. Cataract surgery is a common and effective treatment for cataracts.


Glaucoma refers to a group of eye diseases characterized by damage to the optic nerve, usually due to increased intraocular pressure. Glaucoma is often called the “silent thief of sight” because it can progress without noticeable symptoms until vision loss is significant. However, there are different types of glaucoma, and symptoms can vary:

  • Open-Angle Glaucoma (Most Common): This type often progresses slowly and may not have noticeable symptoms until significant vision loss occurs. Peripheral vision is typically affected first.
  • Closed-Angle Glaucoma (Acute Angle-Closure Glaucoma): This is a medical emergency. Symptoms can be sudden and severe, including intense eye pain, headache, blurred vision, halos around lights, nausea, and vomiting. Seek immediate medical attention if you experience these symptoms.
  • Normal-Tension Glaucoma: In this type, optic nerve damage occurs without an apparent increase in intraocular pressure. Symptoms and progression may be similar to open-angle glaucoma.

Since most forms of glaucoma progress slowly without symptoms, regular eye exams are crucial for early detection. If glaucoma is diagnosed, treatment options may include prescription eye drops, oral medications, laser therapy, or surgery, depending on the type and severity of the condition.

Regular eye check-ups with an eye care professional are essential for maintaining eye health and detecting eye conditions like cataracts and glaucoma in their early stages when treatment is most effective.