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What Causes Cataracts?

Close up of the eyes of an old woman

What causes cataracts?

  1. Oxidants
  2. Bad smoking habits
  3. Harmful UV rays
  4. Physical trauma


For any concerns regarding your vision, an eye center in Las Piñas can help you determine a proactive solution. Vision is something you should take care of as you age. One of the most common problems for people aged 60 and above are cataracts. Cataracts are very common for older adults and can be treated by your ophthalmologist or eye doctor.

As you advance in age and as time passes, the lenses of your eyes become blurry and less flexible. The cataract is a dense cloudy area that forms in the lens of the eye. This is what causes these effects. Cataracts begin when the proteins in the eye form clumps that cause blurriness. These clumps prevent the lens from functioning properly.

The retina converts light that comes through your lens into signals. When this is disrupted, the images you see interfere with your vision. Cataracts disrupt the clear image and may worsen as you age. However, cataracts don’t usually form at the same time.

If you suspect that you have cataracts, approach your ophthalmologist for in-depth solutions and preventative measures. If you’re curious about what causes cataracts, here’s what you need to know.


It’s Caused By Oxidants

An old woman drinking vitamins

If there are too many oxidants produced within your body, you may develop cataracts as you age. The imbalance of antioxidants and pro-oxidants in your system results in oxidative stress. Naturally, the human body produces free radicals due to the nature of metabolism. Destroying these free radicals is important to prevent any oxidative stress. An imbalance such as too many oxidants compared to antioxidants can cause cataracts to develop.

The excess of free radicals damages the proteins and lipids of the lens. This leads to the eventual deterioration of your lens opacity. Less opacity simply means that the images you see are less opaque and clear. Some studies suggest that antioxidants like vitamin C can prevent and balance free radicals within your body.


It Can Be Developed Through Bad Smoking Habits

An ash tray full of used cigarettes

You can encounter a number of health problems just from smoking alone, but did you know that it can also harm your eyes? Smoking can have adverse and fatal effects on your health. You can potentially develop heart-related diseases and cancer. Smoking also threatens the clarity of your sight. You have double the chances of developing cataracts because of your smoking habits.

If you didn’t know it already, cigarette smoke is extremely toxic. It contains over 4,000 harmful compounds that contribute to an unhealthy body. The more you smoke, the higher the chance you have of developing cataracts in your eyes. The way smoking develops cataracts is related to oxidation. Smoking can lead to a heavy accumulation of heavy metals and minerals in your lenses. These minerals can cause increased light sensitivity and are akin to seeing through a waterfall.


It’s Caused By Harmful UV Rays

Extremely bright sunlight

Excessive exposure to ultraviolet rays can cause sunburn, skin cancer, and cataracts. Harmful solar radiation can affect you from a young age. If you’re not careful, it can eventually lead to cataracts. Sunglasses are not just an accessory but also an important means of protection from harmful daylight. If you leave your eyes exposed to the sun, you can eventually become blind from the exposure.

It’s important to watch out for all UV rays, but the most harmful to your eyes would be UV-B rays. UV-B rays are directly absorbed by the front of your eye. The anatomy of your eye consists of the cornea and the lens. This is an integral part of the eye that focuses on light. If you want to protect your eyes, wear sunglasses when you’re outside. It’s important to keep them protected even during cloudy days as UV rays can still penetrate through the clouds.


It Can Be Developed Through Physical Trauma

A young boy with an eye patch bandage

Eye injury can cause cataracts. This can affect young patients if they experience accidents that cause severe injury to the eye. A blunt or penetrating object damaging the eye can cause the development of traumatic cataracts. This type of cataract will involve surgery if your doctor deems it a necessity.

Cataracts from physical trauma are common for those working in industrial factories. It may be due to a lack of protection or caused by an accident. To prevent this from happening, protective gear is key. Small steps such as avoiding scratching your eye can prevent damage to your lens. Another way to prevent the development of a traumatic cataract is to use ophthalmologist recommended and approved contact lenses.


Key Takeaway

Visit a trusted eye center in Las Piñas to learn more about cataracts. Your doctor will be able to determine the best course of action for your condition. If you’ve experienced any of these, it’s best to have it checked as soon as possible to prevent it from developing any further. If you’re a patient of a mature age, you can still enjoy a fulfilling life by managing your cataracts. This can be done through proper medication and eye care as instructed by your ophthalmologist.

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