August is Cataract Awareness Month
Cataracts are the leading cause of vision loss in the United States, according to the CDC. Increased vision loss may mean that you need more than new glasses. More than half of all Americans over the age of 70 have developed cataracts to some degree.
Cataracts are common and curable. Symptoms include blurry vision, colors that appear faded, glare, double vision, and difficulty with night vision.
There are several risk factors that affect the formation of cataracts. If you have diabetes or are a smoker, if you have a family history of cataracts, excessive exposure to sunlight, eye injury or inflammation, or if you’ve had prolonged use of steroids, you are at greater risk for developing cataracts.
You can reduce your risk of developing cataracts by wearing UV protective sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat while being outdoors. Controlling you blood sugar by diet and exercise, and quitting smoking are some ways to reduce your risk. Other ways to reduce your risk include eating more green leafy vegetables, fruits and foods that are rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants neutralize harmful free radicals in the body.
To learn more about vision health and cataracts visit: www.YourSightMatters.com
National Eye Institute – NIH