What Are Cataracts?

| By First Eye Care DFW

Cataracts Treatment With First Eye Care

Cataracts are sometimes known as silent thieves, stealing eyesight without anyone noticing. In fact, many of our cataract patients at First EYE Care are surprised when they get their diagnosis, because they never noticed any symptoms. Cataracts can develop for months, or even years, before doing any permanent damage to the eyesight, but in order to avoid that damage it’s important to begin treatment before the damage has been done. This is why it’s so important to have your eyes examined by our optometrist every year.

What Are Cataracts?

On the front of your eye is a lens, much like a camera lens. Just like that lens on the camera, your own lens serves to focus the images your eye takes in. This lens is made up mostly of protein and water, arranged in a specific pattern to make it crystal clear. Sometimes that protein breaks down and rearranges into clumps, causing cloudy or yellowed vision. Colors can dull it can look like you’re looking through a fog or a gauzy curtain. The damage done to your vision from cataracts isn’t reversible, making early treatment the best way to avoid cataract surgery to save your eyesight.

Causes Of Cataracts

No one is exactly sure why lenses begin to break down to form cataracts, but we do know many factors that make it more likely for it to happen. Most patients develop cataracts after the age of 40; it’s the most common cause of blindness in the world. Other risk factors include:

  • Exposure to UV radiation from sunlight
  • Smoking
  • Obesity
  • Excess alcohol consumption
  • Diabetes
  • Hypertension
  • Hormone replacement therapy
  • Family history

The good news is that most of these risk factors are those you can control. While you can’t change your family history, you can stop smoking, eat sensibly, drink less alcohol, wear sunglasses every time you leave the house, and practice other healthy lifestyle habits. Make these changes a natural part of your day and you’ll lower your chances of developing cataracts by a significant amount.

Manage Your Vision Health At First Eye Care

The key to finding and treating cataracts before they permanently damage your vision is having an annual eye examination after the age of 40, as well as making healthy lifestyle changes to help prevent it from worsening. If you haven’t had an exam in at least a year, call our office at 817-656-2020 to schedule an appointment today.

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