One of the most common health conditions to affect people is cataracts. It has been reported that more than 20 million people over the age of 40 in the US alone are affected by cataracts. At 80 years, over half the people in the country would have cataracts. There are more cases of cataract all over the world than macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, and glaucoma put together.
What is a cataract and how does it affect you?
To put it simply, a cataract is a condition that causes the clouding of the lens in your eye. As the cataract progresses, your vision becomes more and more impaired. This is because the cloudiness increases and more light is blocked from reaching your retina.
The most common causes for cataracts are aging and sun exposure. An individual can also develop cataracts as a result of an eye injury, eye disease, usage of certain medication, or other health conditions like diabetes. People with cataracts experience cloudy or fuzzy vision. Some people notice halos around lights. They also become sensitive to bright, glaring lights.
Cataracts can make it almost impossible for people to perform simple tasks like driving, especially at nights. They may also require frequent changes in their eyeglass prescription. Losing even an ounce of your vision can sometimes be a severe handicap, so it’s very important that you take care of your eyes. Although there are no fool-proof ways for you to prevent the development of cataracts, it is important that you try.
How can you prevent cataracts from progressing?
Here are some simple steps you can follow to make sure that your eyes are in the best of health, which will help decrease your chances of developing cataracts.
1. Visit the eye doctor as regularly as possibly. Schedule an eye exam every year even if your vision is perfectly clear. These routine visits will help your doctor detect any early signs of glaucoma, cataracts, or other types of vision disorders.
2. Quit smoking cigarettes and stop indulging in any unhealthy habits that could harm your health, including drinking too much alcohol.
3. Maintain a nutritious diet that ensures you get the required amounts of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
4. If you have diabetes, make sure you keep your condition in check. People with diabetes have greater chances of developing cataracts.
5. Carry sunglasses anytime you have to go out in the sun. Chronic and prolonged exposure to the sun can damage your eyes and make them more susceptible to cataracts.
These simple steps should help you preventing cataracts. It’s always best to prevent something than cure it later, so start following these tips right away. If cataracts begin to interfere with activities, a simple surgery with laser cataract surgery can bring excellent vision back for most patients.