The most evident cause of cataracts is aging, but there are other factors that increase your risk of developing cataracts. These include:
Because cataracts can deteriorate your vision slowly over the years, you may not notice the effect they have on your daily activities. Fortunately, your eye care professional can help you detect cataracts early through standard eye and retinal examinations.
The Importance of Eye Exams
After a standard vision test, your eye care professional will dilate your pupil to examine the lens and other parts of your eye. These annual eye exams are especially important as you age so that you can diagnose cataracts as they start developing and respond accordingly. It is important to make sure your glasses or contact lenses are strong enough to compensate for your decreased vision. As your cataracts develop, you can discuss with your eye care professional whether surgery would be beneficial.
Because cataracts are a natural result of the aging process, there is no proven way to prevent them. The most important thing to do is to have your eyes regularly examined by your eye care professional to ensure that if or when they do form, you can take the appropriate measures.
However, there have been numerous studies linking certain behaviors to cataract risk. By following these steps, you may slow down their development:
Have your vision checked regularly for early detection.
Wear sunglasses or a hat to block ultraviolet rays when you're outdoors.
Quit smoking. Smoking has been linked to higher odds of developing cataracts.
Follow your treatment plan if you have a medical condition that can increase your risk of cataracts such as diabetes or hypothyroidism.
Wear protective eyewear when active to avoid eye trauma.
Eat healthier to ensure you're getting plenty of vitamins and antioxidants. Evidence has shown that certain nutrients found in foods like fruits, vegetables and fish can help slow the aging process of the eye.