What Causes Cataracts?

The lens of the eye permits light to pass through to the retina, allowing us to see and focus. Consisting of mostly protein and water, the lenses can become clouded as we age due to clumping proteins called cataracts. Over time, cataracts can grow larger and significantly impair our vision.

While there is no one discernible cause for the clumping of these proteins, eye doctors do agree that there are many factors associated with the development of cataracts, including:

  • Exposure to UV rays
  • Smoking
  • High volumes of alcohol consumption
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Eye injury
  • Eye surgery
  • Use of certain medications
  • Hormone replacement therapy
  • Genetics

Although there is no known way to prevent cataracts, recent studies suggest there are some cautionary measures you can take. Vitamin C, vitamin E, antioxidants, lutein, and zeaxanthin may all reduce risk or slow the development of cataracts. Frequent use of UV-blocking eyewear can also help protect your overall eye health.

For more information about risks and treatment of cataract, please contact our office today and schedule a consultation with one of our eye specialists.

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