June is Cataract Awareness Month. So we thought we would take a few minutes to dispel a few rumors surrounding this common vision problem.
Myth 1: Only the elderly develop cataracts.
Unfortunately, cataracts may be unavoidable as we age. But did you know that every once in a while, cataracts can actually occur in young adults, even children? That’s right. Our pals over at preventblindness.org report that although cataracts affect more than 24 million Americans under the age of 40, there are some risk factors that may lead to getting cataract at a much younger age:
Some of the factors include:
- Intense heat or long-term exposure to UV rays from the sun
- Certain diseases, such as diabetes
- Inflammation in the eye
- Hereditary influences
- Events before birth, such as German measles in the mother
- Long-term steroid use
- Severe long-term nearsightedness (myopia)
- Eye injuries
- Eye diseases
Myth 2: Taking vitamins E and C can prevent cataracts.
Are vitamins a great way to promote healthy vision? For Sure! But we aren’t quite convinced as to the affects they have on cataracts. Some research centers are studying the link between these vitamins and cataract prevention. However, it will be many years before the studies can determine if vitamin C or E actually reduces a person’s risk of cataract. Until then, it’s best not to take these vitamins in large doses unless they have been prescribed by your physician.
Myth 3: I should have cataract surgery AS SOON as I am diagnosed:
At nJoy Vision, our team of doctors are ready, willing, and able to help you through your struggle with cataracts. Our laser cataract procedure is the best in the business. And while you will most likely want to take care of your cloudy vision eventually, immediate action may not be the best course of action. Cataract removal is elective surgery, which means it is the patient’s choice when to undergo the procedure. Most people need surgery when the cataract causes enough vision loss to interfere with work, play or other day-to-day tasks. You, your eye doctor, and family members should decide together when and if surgery is needed.