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Cataracts: Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis, treatment and more

 

A cataract is a cloudy area in the lens of the eye, These cloudy areas can be genetic in nature (hereditary), or an age-related condition that is normal and present for everyone as they grow older, though more common among the elderly (senile). Cataracts are caused by the lens of the eye losing its ability to create and store light as it should.

 

eye cataract, cataract vision, cataracts treatment, types of cataract

Symptoms:

Cataracts are a gradual, progressive condition.  Symptoms generally develop slowly and initially may be mild, though in some cases the symptoms can be more severe or somewhat sudden.

 the most common symptoms of cataracts:

. Vision loss

. Blurred or cloudy vision

. Glare from bright lights

. Colors are faded or dull in appearance

. Distorted, blurry images that move or dance

. Changes in night vision or difficulty driving at night (night blindness)

. Cloudy, hazy or "milky" appearance of the eye lens  (usually occurs with senile cataracts)

When to see a doctor?

If you notice these symptoms in yourself or someone close to you, it is important for the person to see a doctor immediately. A cataract does not require surgery, but early treatment can lessen amount of vision loss that occurs.

Causes:

Cataract formation can be hereditary or due to aging or another factor.

The most common causes of cataracts include:

. Age-related – the most common cause of cataracts is age-related in nature. As we age, our lens can lose its ability to create and store light as it should.

. Hereditary – inherited, have a family history of cataracts and other eye diseases, parent(s) had cataracts

. Trauma to the eye – injuries to the eye, injury that involves a blow to the eye

. Infection of the eye – infections such as chlamydia and gonorrhea can cause cataracts in young people; bacteria that infect the body can also cause cataracts (gynecomastia)

. Other medical conditions – conditions other than those mentioned above, such as diabetes and high blood pressure, may increase your risk of cataracts.

Types of cataracts:

There are three types of cataracts:

1. Nuclear sclerosis cataract – occurs when the lens' lacrimal gland no longer works properly (usually occurs with age)

2. Lamellar cataract – occurs when some cells in the lens don't work, resulting in a cloudy area in the front of the eye

3. Early onset – occur in people under 40 years old and is generally normal at birth.

Risk factors:

1. Age-related

2. Family history (hereditary)

3. Medical conditions

4. Trauma to the eye or injury can lead to cataracts

5. Infection of the eye or any condition that causes inflammation of the eyeball, such as infection with chlamydia or gonorrhea in young people, bacteria that infect the body can also cause cataracts (gynecomastia)

6. Other medical conditions

7. Allergy to cataracts medicine

8. Smoking (long-term cigarette smoking can be a factor)

Diagnosis: 

In order to diagnose your cataract, your eye care provider will order a series of tests, including an eye exam and a dilated ophthalmoscope exam in which the eye is fully dilated and evaluated with an atlas lens. This procedure is called a tonometer exam (to test the pressure in the eye). Your health care provider may also test for other diseases where you may have pain in your eyes, including diabetes and high blood pressure .

If you are older than 40 years old, it is very important for you to receive regular eye exams. If you notice any of these symptoms in yourself or someone close to you, it is important for the person to see a doctor immediately. A cataract does not require surgery, but early treatment can lessen amount of vision loss that occurs.

Treatment:

1. Improve your lifestyle – increase nutrition and keep your health care provider updated on your medical history and any changes in lifestyle (such as smoking) or medications

2. Surgery – can remove the cataract

3.   Photo Lense – In this procedure, your health care provider inserts a small lens into the eye. The lens magnifies images and is used by some people who cannot see well enough to operate a computer.

4. Contact Lense – You look through a small magnifying glass with a contact lens in front of your eye (similar to eyeglasses) that helps your health care provider see the inside of your eye better

5. Intraocular Lens (IOL) – An artificial lens implanted within the eye that improves vision by replacing natural lenses and helps avoid complications such as loss of depth perception and limited peripheral vision

6. Laser Surgery – A technique that uses a laser beam to treat the cataract

Post surgery

· Your health care provider will let you know what to expect after your cataract surgery

· Follow your health care provider's directions regarding at home care, driving, etc.

· If you are prescribed eyedrops, use them as directed by your eye doctor.

· You may have cloudy vision for several days after surgery; don't be alarmed.

· If you notice any of these symptoms in yourself or someone close to you, it is important for the person to see a doctor immediately. A cataract does not require surgery, but early treatment can lessen amount of vision loss that occurs.

How to avoid Cataract :

There are a lot of factors which can cause cataract.  Cataract is not only a result of aging, but also have the strong relationship with any diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure or even allergy to some medicine.

The best way to avoid cataract is to maintain a healthy lifestyle.  You should pay more attention on your diet and exercise regularly. 

Exercises:

1. Do exercises on a regular basis – yoga, walk or swimming could be good choices.  If you prefer something more vigorous, take up jogging!

2. Pace yourself – don't do too much too soon; increase your endurance slowly over time

3. Know your limits – Only do what you can do. Accept what you can't do and try to push yourself only as far as you are willing to go

4. Keep an eye on your weight, if there is any changes in it, consult your doctor

5.   Eat more healthy food, fruits and vegetables – this will reduce the risk of cataracts

6. Avoid high-fat foods – too much high-fat food causes many other health problems besides cataracts (such as obesity)

7. Get enough sleep - about 7-8 hours a night is the ideal amount for adults

8.   Choose a healthy lifestyle: such as exercising regularly and eating more fruits and vegetables

9.    Take care of your body – do not indulge in things that are unhealthy.

 

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