All About Cataracts


 All About Cataracts

A cataract is a film that develops inside the eye, blocking the natural light and leading to limited vision. It's important to see an eye doctor if you have been experiencing problems with your eyesight for a long time. This article will review what causes cataracts, how they can be diagnosed and treated, and how you can prevent them from occurring again in the future.

Cataracts are caused by aging as well as factors like smoking or diabetes. Once developed, they do not disappear on their own so it's important for all people over 40 to have regular checkups with their professional eye practitioners every year or two years to ensure there aren't any developing.

On the other side of the spectrum, young people need to take special precautions as well. Anyone who is nearsighted needs to begin wearing glasses before they are fully mature if they want to avoid developing cataracts later on. It's also important for lenses on contact lenses to be replaced (most optometrists will teach you how), and anyone with diabetes or smoking needs to quit smoking and start exercising regularly.

What Causes Cataracts? [ARTICLE END]
There are a number of things that cause cataracts but all of them have something in common: inflammation, which can lead to cellular death of the eyes. There are a number of different causes of inflammation.

One is cataracts being present in the first place. There are a few types: congenital cataracts, clouds without an underlying cause, and nuclear sclerosis – little yellow spots on the lens that don't lead to vision loss but cause some discomfort unless treated.

Another identical type (congenital) is when your cataract starts during pregnancy or early infancy before both your eyes have fully developed to full maturity and at an early stage in your life, it may be more difficult for you to have them repaired. They can also be the result of age.

A third type is traumatic cataracts, which can result from blunt force impacts or penetrating trauma. Other types are secondary cataracts, which develop in people with eye infections, inflammatory conditions, alkalosis and other factors that affect the eyes during illness. An infected eye is a breeding ground for unwanted bacteria and prevents your eyes from being treated by your eye care professional as often as they should be so it's important to keep them clean if you have any of these conditions.

Other causes are diabetes and steroids; steroids increase intraocular pressure (IOP) and close to 70% of people who take them develop cataracts.

Diabetes is another common factor that can lead to cataracts. There are two types of diabetes: insulin resistant and type 1 diabetes, which results from a lack of insulin or delayed release of insulin in the body. It usually causes people to experience blurry vision – not night vision – but this can change as the disease progresses over time.

Most people with type 2 diabetes have IOP that is high (20mmHg ) and there is little chance that their doctors will be able to lower it enough to improve their night vision if they don't start working on controlling their diabetes on top of improving their eyesight.

Both these are also symptoms of glaucoma (another common condition that causes blindness; it's the result of damage to the optic nerve) which is why you should never ignore persistent blurred vision if you have any of these conditions.

Steroids can cause an increase in IOP, as well as cataracts. If you are taking steroids for a particular illness or treatment, it's very important to talk to your eye doctor about how much and for how long your steroids need to be continued and what types of side effects and complications they might result in.

Treatments and Prevention [ARTICLE START]

There are two types of cataract treatment. The first type is laser surgery, which involves using a laser to break apart the cataract so that it can be removed without leaving any scarring in its place (it's not as easy as it sounds; a number of factors including the patient's specific lens and cataract need to be taken into account for this type of surgery so many times, it's better to leave the surgery to your eye doctor). Sometimes, an artificial lens is put in place after removal; other times, the natural lens can stay or have a new one put in.

The second type of treatment is a procedure called phacoemulsification, which involves using an ultrasound probe to break apart the cataract into smaller pieces that can be removed. It's usually combined with small incisions that are made so your doctor can get rid of the cataract over a period of time. Sometimes, a new lens is left in place; other times it's replaced with an artificial one.

The most important thing you can do to prevent cataracts is to keep your eyes healthy, especially if you are over 40 years old or have diabetes. You should also keep them clean by using an eye drop for dry or irritated eyes at least once a day.

It's best to have cataract surgery when your vision is the clearest to reduce the risk of complications and you should always have regular checkups with your eye doctor every year or two. If you have diabetes and smoke, it's important that you stop smoking and start exercising regularly; both are associated with low IOP and it's not uncommon for both to be high together (and sometimes one will be lower than the other) so if you are experiencing blurred vision, contact your eye doctor as soon as possible for an examination and checkups they can recommend.

Problems that Cataracts can Cause [ARTICLE END]

Cataracts can cause a number of problems if you have them, both in your vision and otherwise. Sometimes, they don't even need to be removed before they start causing problems in your life, but once they are removed, the symptoms disappear. Here are some of the common problems that cataracts can cause:

Blurred or hazy vision : Cataracts block light from entering your eye and hitting your retina so you don't get the clearest image.


It's important to seek help from your eye doctor if you feel you have cataracts, especially if you have any of the symptoms of glaucoma. Not only will your doctor be able to look for the cataracts and remove them, but it may also be possible to place an artificial lens in place so that you can see better. Additionally, it's possible that treatment for diabetes or other associated conditions may help improve symptoms of cataracts so make sure to take advantage of any resources provided by your medical professional as quickly as possible.

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