Cataracts refer to a vision impairment where cloudy vision is caused by a clouding of the lens inside our eye. It is a common and curable vision impairment and is mostly associated with aging. Most people are expected to develop cataracts over the age of eighty. They can develop in either one or both eyes. When rays of light enter our eye, they pass through the lens and focus on the retina where they are converted into nerve signals and sent to the brain via the optic nerve. When the lens of our eye becomes cloudy due to cataracts, the rays of light cannot pass through properly, causing our vision to become cloudy.
Causes of Cataracts
- In order to understand what causes the lens of the eyes to become cloudy, we must understand how the lens work first.
- The lens of our eye is composed of mostly water and protein. The protein is arranged in a very specific manner which ensures the clarity of the lens which allows light to pass through it.
- During the natural process of ageing, the arrangement of protein in our eyes begins to change and some of them clump together and cover a small area of the lens. This is known as a cataract.
- Studies have suggested risk factors for cataracts like smoking and diabetes. However, the cause of cataracts is usually natural wear and tear of the eye as it ages.
Tips to Prevent Cataracts
Even though the most common cause of cataracts is old age, there are some things you can do to minimize the risk of developing cataracts:
- Live a healthy life overall research has suggested that cataracts can be caused due to lifestyle choices such as cigarettes and alcohol. By aiming toward living a healthy life, you’ll be less likely to develop cataracts.
- Protect your eyes from the sunExposure to UV rays of the sun is bad for our eyes for various reasons and one of them is that they are also considered to be a cause of cataracts. It is vital to protect your eyes from the shade, especially in the summer, with UV-blocking sunglasses and hats, if needed.
- Visit your ophthalmologist regularly the importance of regular eye examinations cannot be stressed enough. By visiting your ophthalmologist regularly, you can always ensure the good health of your vision.
Common and Curable
Cataracts are very common and with today’s advanced cataract surgery, it is also very curable. To know more about cataract surgery, visit Eye Care Specialities.
Article: Tips to Prevent Cataracts, Causes of Cataracts
Author: Dr Charu | Jun 20 2019 | UPDATED 02:00 IST
*The views expressed here are solely those of the author in his private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Centre for Sight.