What Causes Cataracts, and Can They Be Prevented?


Cataracts are caused by a clouding of the eye's natural lens, which causes fuzzy sight and other visual symptoms. Because the onset is often quite slow, people don't always know they have cataracts developing until the symptoms become severe or the problem is noticed by an optometrist.

Once someone has developed cataracts, they'll need cataract surgery to replace the cloudy lens with an artificial one, which is usually a quick and easy procedure despite how complex it might sound.

But what causes cataracts to occur? And is there a way to prevent them? These are the main causes behind the problem.


Cataracts are most common in people over the age of 60, and those over 40 also have a higher risk than younger people. While there's nothing you can do to stop simple age-related cataracts, it is even more important to have regular eye checks as you get older. An early diagnosis helps stop the problem from getting to the severe stage.


Diabetics are more prone to developing cataracts because high blood sugar increases the risk of the lens clouding. The exact reasons behind this aren't understood, but the statistical link is clear. If you have diabetes, reducing the risk of cataracts is one more reason to keep careful control of your blood sugar levels through diet and medication. You should also attend regular appointments for eye tests so the problem can be spotted early.


Research suggests that smoking tobacco actually increases the risk of cataracts in two separate ways. First, the effects of substances found in smoke impair the ability of the eyes to repair themselves when damage occurs. Secondly, when smoke touches the eyes, it can cause damage and irritation that may lead to cataracts over time. If you quit smoking, it will have a big impact on your cataract risk, and it's especially important if you fall into any of the other risk groups.

Certain steroid medications

If you're on steroidal medication, check the list of potential side-effects and consult with a doctor or pharmacist to find out if there's an increased chance of cataracts developing. You may be able to switch to an alternative, but if not, you'll be aware of the risk. Let your optometrist know so they can recommend extra checks if necessary.

Eye injuries

Injuries to the eyes are, of course, unexpected, but that doesn't mean there's nothing you can do about them. Always wear good eye protection if you carry out work or take part in leisure activities where your eyes are at risk. Never take their health for granted.


14 August 2017

Caring For Your Eyes

Hello! Welcome to my blog. My name is Karl and today I would like to introduce you to the subject of looking after your eyesight. For many years, I didn't give my eyes much thought. I always thought that my eyes would look after themselves. However, I got older, I noticed that I found it difficult to read signs at a distance and to make out friends faces as they approached me. My wife suggested that I visit an optometrist and have my eyes checked. I was fitted with glasses which have improved my vision. I hope you enjoy my blog.