Published On: Mon, Sep 28th, 2020

Take care of your eyes and avoid cataracts

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Cataracts are among the most common causes of blindness. These can be easily distinguished, and even someone who does not know medicine can identify them. They are seen as white reflections in the center of the eye, where the lens is.

Cataracts actually cause clouding of the lens. This, by not letting the light through, does not allow vision and it gets worse over time.

Now, how can we prevent cataracts? To find out, first of all, it is important to know why they are formed.

Why do cataracts form?

Cataracts are formed by some of these causes or a combination of them:

  • Ultraviolet radiation: both UV-A and UV-B radiation can cause cataracts. That is, although the eye is made to translate light into neural impulses, too much sunlight can damage it.
  • Osmotic problems: this is the case of diabetic people. In them, sugar alcohols accumulate causing changes in pressure and electrolyte balance. Over time, the lens degenerates and the cataract appears.
  • Chemical toxins: some toxic substances can cause cataracts as well. For example, if drops are used excessively and irresponsibly to dilate the pupil of the eyes, some ocular antibiotics, and even anti-inflammatory steroid drops.
  • Genetics: there are also hereditary cataracts, and there are about 300 genes associated with them. In many cases, they appear together with other diseases of the eye or other parts of the body.
  • Advanced age: those over the age of 75 are expected to begin to experience some lens clouding. This opacity is more frequent in Afro-descendant individuals.

How to prevent cataracts?

By looking at the causes, we clearly see that some of them can be prevented directly or indirectly. For example:

  • It is important to take care of our eyes from ultraviolet radiation. We can do this by wearing sunglasses and avoiding direct exposure for a long time.
  • Preventing diabetes and sugar problems can also help us prevent cataracts. For this reason, let’s take care of our diet and consult a specialist regularly.
  • We must follow the doctor’s recommendations and not use eye medications irresponsibly. Abusing some of them can cause cataracts.

In addition to these recommendations, we can take into account the following:

  • Avoid or completely discontinue excessive use of alcohol and tobacco.
  • In some women after menopause, estrogen replacement therapy may prevent cataracts.
  • Some vitamins, antioxidants, and even aspirin may sometimes be helpful. However, there are still many doubts and the studies are not convincing.

In general, it is worth highlighting the role of the doctor in preventing cataracts. Depending on your particular case, you may need some prevention methods over others. Therefore, do not hesitate to go to a doctor if you suspect or have family members with cataracts.

We want to thank Dr. Mercedes Silva Orellana ophthalmologist who reviewed and verified this article. She  is a Surgeon graduated from the National University of San Marcos, in Peru, has a specialty in Ophthalmology from the National University of San Marcos, Peru. Her specialties are Anterior Segment Surgery, Glaucoma Treatment and Glaucoma Surgery.


  1. Taylor & Francis Online



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