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Cataracts occur when the clear lens in the eye turns cloudy, thus interfering with vision. Increasing age is one of the risk factors for cataracts. However, don't worry. There are several things you can do to prevent cataracts
Cataracts generally occur as a result of increasing age or experiencing an injury that changes the tissue of the eye's lens. Cataracts can also occur due to genetic disorders, diabetes, repeated sun exposure to the eye, and long-term use of corticosteroids.
The process of cataracts begins when the protein in the lens of your eye breaks down and clumps together. This clump of protein will cause the lens of the eye to cloud and eventually cloud your vision.
At first, you may not realize that you have cataracts. But over time, blurred vision will make it difficult for you to read or perform daily activities. If cataracts have made it difficult for you to move, surgery is the only way to treat this condition.
How to Prevent Cataracts
Although increasing age is one of the factors causing cataracts, it does not mean that this condition cannot be prevented. There are several ways that can help prevent cataracts, especially for those of you who have a family history of cataracts, including:
1. Check eye condition regularly
If you regularly check your eye he alth, the doctor will quickly detect if there are signs of cataracts. Cataracts that are still in their early stages can be more easily treated and treated by an ophthalmologist.
Adults are recommended to have their eyes checked by a doctor every two years until they are 50 years old. Over the age of 50, it is recommended that you have your eyes checked at least once a year.
Meanwhile for people with a history of diabetes who are more at risk of developing eye disease, it is recommended to have their eyes checked more often.
2. Protects eyes from UV rays
Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light in the eyes can increase the risk of developing cataracts. In addition, UV rays also make cataracts that have previously been experienced become more severe. This is because ultraviolet (UV) rays can damage the proteins in the lens of the eye.
To prevent cataracts, avoid direct sunlight by wearing sunglasses or a wide-brimmed hat, especially when you are active in direct sunlight.
Choose sunglasses that can block at least 99% of UV rays and are wide, so that you get maximum protection.
3. Maintain a he althy body
Maintaining a he althy body is very important in preventing diseases, one of which is cataracts. This is because there are several diseases that can increase the risk of cataracts, such as diabetes, unhe althy eye conditions, and complications from previous eye surgery.
You should also be careful about long-term use of corticosteroids, because they can increase the risk of developing cataracts. Always make sure to have regular check-ups with your doctor regarding your steroid use and co-morbidities.
4. Eating nutritious food
Research shows that consumption of foods containing antioxidant compounds, such as lutein and zeaxanthin, vitamin C, and vitamin E, has a significant impact on reducing the risk of cataracts.Antioxidants are known to stop the breakdown of proteins in the lens of the eye, thereby preventing cataracts.
You can get antioxidant benefits from eating dark green leafy vegetables. Meanwhile, natural sources of vitamin C can be obtained from oranges, tomatoes, strawberries, broccoli, melons, and kiwis, as well as sources of vitamin E which can be obtained from vegetable oils, almonds, and spinach.
5. Maintain ideal body weight
Overweight or obesity can increase the risk of developing diabetes, which is one of the risk factors for cataracts. Therefore, make sure you maintain your ideal body weight by following a he althy diet and eating balanced nutritious foods, as well as exercising regularly.
6. Quitting smoking habit
Smoking can increase the risk of developing cataracts because it creates more free radicals in your eyes. In order to reduce the risk of cataracts, you are advised to reduce or stop smoking.If this is too much effort, try to consult a doctor.
7. Limiting the consumption of alcoholic beverages
If you are a fan of alcoholic beverages, you should limit or stop this habit. Research shows that excessive alcohol consumption can increase the risk of developing cataracts.
Cataracts are often not detected at the beginning because they rarely cause complaints. But over time, you will feel some complaints, even difficulty seeing. Therefore, prevent cataracts so that the eyes are always he althy until old age.
If you have eye complaints, such as difficulty seeing at night, double vision, blurred vision, or other cataract eye symptoms, please consult a doctor immediately to get the right treatment.