Cataracts are cloudy areas in the lens of the eye that cause things to look blurry or fuzzy. You may see double, colors look faded, your eyes are extra sensitive to light and you usually have trouble seeing well at night. Left untreated, they can eventually lead to blindness. Developing cataracts are a normal part of the aging process as more than half of Americans age 80 and older have cataracts.
Cataracts can develop earlier as a result of other things such as diabetes, obesity, smoking, high blood pressure, a family history of cataracts and even previous eye trauma. While you can’t treat cataracts with exercise, diet or lasers, here are five things you can do to reduce your odds of getting them or at least to keep cataracts from progressing:
Have regular eye exams
Make sure you see your eye doctor regularly so they can test your vision and diagnose and treat problems before they become worse and more damaging.
Watch your blood sugars if you have diabetes
Cataracts occur more often in people with diabetes. If your blood sugar is too high for too long, the lens of your eye swells.
Smoking is associated with several serious health conditions and can lead to cataracts. Talk to your doctor about strategies to quit smoking, including medications and smoking-cessation programs.
Reduce alcohol consumption
Having more than two drinks a day can raise your odds of having cataracts.
Eat a balanced diet
Eating a diet full of fruits and vegetables gives you the essential vitamins and minerals such as vitamins C and E for optimal eye health.
The sun’s ultraviolet rays can be damaging to our eyes, even on the cloudiest of days, as the rays can reach through clouds. Sunglasses that block 99-100% of UVA and UVB rays are the best choice.
Cataracts happen gradually as you get older, and often the natural lens eventually will need to be removed and replaced with an artificial lens to help you see clearly. To learn more about how we treat cataracts, contact our Springfield office today at (413) 782-0030