A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the eye that affects vision. Cataracts are a normal part of the aging process, but there are certain things you can do to delay or prevent worsening of your cataracts. The vision experts at Austin Eye provide diagnosis of cataracts and offer several treatment options for cataracts. In this post, we discuss ways to reduce your risk of cataracts.
Protect Yourself from the Sun
Prolonged exposure to sunlight may increase your risk for cataracts. Wearing a hat with a brim and sunglasses can block ultraviolet light and help delay or prevent cataracts. There is some evidence that wearing sunglasses at an early age can reduce development of cataracts later in life, so start thinking about cataract prevention now, even if you don’t have any vision issues yet.
Avoid Smoking and Alcohol
If you needed another reason to quit smoking, then do it for the sake of your vision. Smoking significantly increases your risk of developing cataracts. The link between cataracts and alcohol is not as clear, but some studies have found the alcohol consumption is a risk factor for cataracts. Some prescription medications have also been linked to cataracts. Talk with your doctor if you have questions about whether your prescriptions may be putting you at risk.
Consider Your Overall Health
Certain diseases, such as diabetes, can increase your risk for cataracts. Good nutrition may be able to help delay cataracts, so make leafy greens, fruits, and other antioxidant-rich foods a part of your regular diet.
There is also a strong genetic component in the development of cataracts, so it’s a good idea to know your family history. Reduce your risk for diabetes and other diseases with a healthy diet and active lifestyle, and if you have a family history of diabetes or cataracts, be sure to stay up-to-date with all of your eye exams, especially after you reach age 50.
Schedule an Appointment at Austin Eye
The vision experts at Austin Eye are happy to answer all of your questions about risk factors for cataracts, as well as diagnosis and treatment options. If you’re interested in cataract surgery in Austin, contact Dr. Shannon Wong and his staff today for a consultation by calling (512) 250-2020.