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Cataracts is the clouding of the lens inside the eye, behind the pupil. This can cause a gradual blurring of vision, which is sometimes described as vision that is ‘frosted’ or ‘fogged up’, with colours appearing less brilliant, poor night vision, and unstable prescription for some people.

This can be apparent under a slit-lamp biomicroscope (/eye-examination), where a slit of light is used to observe the lens behind the pupil, while mature cataracts can be easily seen by shining a pen-light at the pupil of the eye.

Normal aging is the most common cause of cataracts, which is why it often affects both eyes although to a different extent. However, cataracts can also be caused by trauma and other factors, and it can also be congenital (born with it).

Your risk of developing cataracts, expectedly, increases with age. In addition, excessive exposure to Ultra-Violet (UV) light, diabetes, smoking, use of corticosteroid medications, and history of eye surgery may increase the possibility of developing cataracts.

You can reduce your chances of developing cataracts by reducing the risk factors mentioned above, such as by carrying an umbrella when out in the sun and using eyeglasses with UV protection, and maintaining a healthy diet (fruits and vegetables).


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