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Understanding the Symptoms, Causes, and Risk Factors Associated With Cataracts

By age 65, the vast majority of people have developed a cataract. Around the age of 75 to 85, over half of people have experienced some vision loss due to cataracts. In this brief article, an eye care professional with the Florida Eye Center will discuss the symptoms, causes, and risk factors associated with cataracts. Remember, one of the best ways to prevent cataracts is to schedule regular eye exams with an eye doctor in Tampa. Whether you require a routine checkup or cataract surgery, schedule an appointment with an eye specialist in Tampa at the Florida Eye Center for routine exams and specialized eye care. 

Understanding the Symptoms of Cataracts

The first signs of a cataract forming can be subtle. You may notice a slight decrease in vision clarity, which may not go away even when you’re wearing glasses. Over time, you could notice colors beginning to fade ever so slightly. Light sensitivity is another common symptom of cataracts. 

Unfortunately, as a cataract grows in size, what was once a subtle vision issue becomes increasingly problematic. With time, a person may see halos around lights, have double vision in an eye, experience sudden eye pain, or constantly need a new prescription for their glasses or contacts. Any of these symptoms, extreme or subtle, require the attention of an eye doctor. 

What Causes Cataracts?

Vision is slowly affected over time as the lens of an eye becomes more and more clouded from a cataract growing in size. Most cataracts develop naturally with age; however, some cataract cases can be linked to a traumatic injury, genetics, other eye conditions, or other medical conditions, such as diabetes. 

Cataracts are organized into subclassifications based on the location of the cataract. The three most common types of age-related cataracts are nuclear sclerotic (central portion of the lens), cortical (outside edges of the lens), or posterior subcapsular (back surface). Because cataracts are often an age-related eye problem, if you are 65 years of age or older, you should consider visiting an eye doctor annually to ensure your eye health. 

Risks Factors Associated with Cataracts

As we have discussed throughout this article, the primary risk factor for developing cataracts is one that cannot be controlled: getting older. Health-related risk factors include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Obesity
  • Smoking 
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Diabetes
  • Sunlight exposure
  • Previous eye conditions

Along with partaking in a healthy diet that includes eating a variety of vitamin-C enriched fruits and vegetables and investing in a pair of sunglasses, visit an eye care professional once a year for an examination. Cataracts can be diagnosed by an eye doctor in Tampa during a dilated eye exam. If cataracts are significantly impacting your vision, an ophthalmologist can surgically replace them with artificial lenses. To learn more about diagnosis and treatment of cataracts, consult the eye care professionals at Florida Eye Center.  

To schedule a consultation with an eye specialist in Tampa at the Florida Eye Center, please request an appointment today.

Disclaimer: The contents of this website are for general educational purposes only. All content and media on the Florida Eye Center website does not constitute professional medical advice nor is the information intended to replace the services provided by the medical professionals at Florida Eye Center or other qualified medical professionals. If you believe you are having a medical emergency, call 911 immediately. The content, views, and opinions communicated on this website do not represent the views of Florida Eye Center. Reliance on any information provided by this website is solely at your own risk. Although this website contains links to other medical websites, this is strictly for informational purposes. Florida Eye Center is not responsible nor do they approve of the content featured on any third party linked websites referenced on this website.

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