Reduce Your Risk Of Developing Cataracts

Reduce Your Risk Of Developing Cataracts

Cataracts are a clouding of the crystalline lens caused by protein breakdown. As cataracts develop, less light can enter the eyes and vision is impaired. There are some risks for developing cataracts that you can’t control. Most people who develop cataracts are between the ages of 40 and 50 and have a family history of cataracts. While these risk factors are out of your control, others are not. Many lifestyle factors contribute to an increased risk of cataract development, and if you can alter these behaviours, you may be able to prevent or slow the development of cataracts.

Ways To Mitigate Cataract Development

Eat Well
The vitamins and nutrients you eat affect your eye health. Vitamins A, C, and E are integral for preventing cataract development, and a deficiency in any of these vitamins will increase your risk of developing cataracts. To get more vitamin E in your diet, eat almonds, peanuts, beet greens, pumpkin, red bell peppers, and sunflower seeds. For increased vitamin A, eat leafy greens, orange and yellow vegetables, fish oil, tomatoes, milk, and eggs. To get more vitamin C, eat a variety of cruciferous vegetables and citrus fruits.

Eating well in general and avoiding foods high in saturated fats and sugars will help your overall eye health. If your blood sugar stays high for too long, it can cause the lens of your eye to swell and it can increase sorbitol levels in the eye. This can lead to the development of cataracts.

Avoid UV Exposure
UV rays are a form of radiation emitted by the sun and by human-made sources such as tanning beds. UVA and UVB rays both cause harmful effects to the eyes, including increasing the rate of protein breakdown within the lens, causing the development of cataracts. To help reduce your risk of cataract development, wear UV blocking sunglasses or eyeglasses all year long, even in the winter and on cloudy days. UV rays are always present outside, even if it doesn’t seem like a particularly sunny day.

Reduce Alcohol Consumption
There is a high rate of cataracts among people who are addicted to alcohol and otherwise consume high rates of alcohol. By limiting alcohol intake, you can help reduce your risk of cataract development. If you need assistance reducing your alcohol consumption, speak with your doctor about resources.

Get Regular Eye Exams
Monitoring your eye health allows your optometrist to detect cataracts early so that you can begin a cataract management plan. By detecting cataracts early, your optometrist can help you slow the progression of cataracts, which can maintain your vision for longer. If your cataracts progress and cause vision impairment, your optometrist can refer you for cataract removal surgery.

Cataract Prevention And Management In Calgary

To ensure your eye health and to prevent or control cataract development, cataract assessments are vital. Because the average person with cataracts does not notice the symptoms, it’s important to be tested for cataracts. A visit to your optometrist can help diagnose the problem before it becomes severe. At Blink Optometry, our optometrists can assess your eye and vision health and can diagnose cataracts and develop a treatment plan. With three convenient locations in Crowfoot in NW Calgary, West Springs in SW Calgary, and Creekside in NW Calgary, Blink Eyewear can offer you great optometry services throughout the city. To speak to a Blink Eyewear team member, call 1-403-516-2292 or fill out the online contact form.

Q: Can cataracts cause blindness?
A: If there is no intervention, cataracts can technically lead to blindness. However, unlike other eye conditions, cataracts only affect vision and do not affect eye health and the vision impairment caused by cataracts can be reversed with cataract surgery.

Q: Are surgeries for cataracts safe?
A: Yes. Cataract surgery is considered low-risk. According to a survey conducted from 1994 to 2006, 99.5% of patients reported no severe complications following their surgery.

Q: Are cataracts painful?
A: Other than potential sensitivity to light and glare and perhaps headaches caused by eye strain, no, cataracts do not hurt.

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Blink Eyewear boasts the largest collection of eyewear in Calgary, but our 3 locations are also home to the region’s finest optometrists. Just as you will not find a better store to shop for your eyewear, you will not find a better vision clinic to do your eye exam or treat your eye condition. 

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