Your sight matters! Cataracts are the leading cause of vision loss in the United States, and it is the leading cause of blindness in the world. (Source: Eye World, 2017)
Over twenty-two million Americans are affected by cataracts, resulting in an annual estimated cataract treatment cost of $6.8 billion. (Source: Friends for Sight, 2017) FirstLight Home Care wants you to take care of your eyes and to be aware that you can help protect yourself from cataracts by understanding the disease and being proactive on how to prevent it.
A cataract is a clouding of the eye’s lens that leads to decreased vision. Any interference with the eye’s lens impacts how it focuses images onto the retina at the back of the eye. If left untreated, cataracts can lead to decreased vision.
The are many risk factors for developing cataracts including: diabetes, prolonged exposure to sunlight, tobacco use and alcohol consumption. The good news is that impaired vision from cataracts can be restored by surgically removing the affected lens, and replacing it with an artificial one.
While 50 percent of those over age 80 have cataracts, studies have shown that the risk for cataract development can be prevented.
To reduce your risk of becoming a cataract statistics, Ophthalmologists recommend these simple actions you can take today to keep your vision sharp:
- See your eye doctor regularly – typically once per year
- Protect your eyes from the sun to reduce ultraviolet exposure by wearing sunglasses when outdoors
- Quit smoking, better yet, don’t start smoking
- Minimize your alcohol consumption
- Keep your diabetes under control
- Eat right. Eat lots of leafy greens and foods high in antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, selenium and vitamins C and E
There is lots to see in this world! No matter what your age, you should be active in protecting your eyes so that you will have a lifetime of great vision. Find a local Ophthalmologist near you.