A cataract is a dense, cloudy area that forms in the lens of the eye. This makes it appear as though you are seeing through a foggy window. There are three major types of cataracts:
- Nuclear Sclerotic Cataracts
- Cortical Cataracts
- Posterior Subcapsular Cataracts
The most common kind of cataract is the Nuclear sclerotic cataract, which results from the condition often referred to as senile nuclear sclerosis. According to the National Eye Institute, nuclear sclerotic cataracts affect over half of people in the United States by the time they are 80 years old.
What is a Nuclear Sclerotic Cataract?
Senile nuclear sclerosis usually occurs naturally with age, but can also result from other factors, such as diabetes, steroid use, exposure to UV rays and smoking. It occurs when the central portion of the lens called the nucleus, hardens. A nuclear sclerotic cataract progresses slowly so it normally takes many years before vision becomes impaired.
Over time, as it affects the eye’s ability to focus, close-up vision may temporarily improve. This effect is referred to as “second sight.”
What are the Symptoms of Nuclear Sclerosis Cataracts?
Cataracts can cause significant changes in the ability to see clearly. Most issues start slowly and get worsen over time. If you experience any of these nuclear sclerotic cataract symptoms, you should see an eye doctor for a full exam and consultation.
- Cloudy or blurry vision
- Faded color appearance
- Poor night vision
- Light sensitivity
- Halos around lights
- Double vision
- Frequent prescription changes
Treatment for Nuclear Sclerotic Cataracts
Because nuclear sclerosis cataracts start and progress slowly, there are things that you can do to address the initial symptoms that do not require invasive procedures.
There are many ways to deal with the effects of nuclear sclerosis cataracts when you first notice symptoms. Small changes like wearing anti-glare sunglasses, using readers or magnifying glasses and making your surroundings brighter can all provide relief. Certain supplements that are formulated to support ocular health, like Tozal Vitamins, can also help alleviate symptoms associated with nuclear sclerotic cataracts.
People with cataracts may also be more likely to suffer from dry eyes. Using specially formulated drops and dry eye supplements can help provide relief.
Once the effects of nuclear sclerosis progress to the point where your daily activities are impacted, you may need to talk to your doctor about surgical options. Nuclear sclerosis cataract surgery is a relatively simple and highly effective way to treat cataracts. During the outpatient surgery, the cloudy lens is removed and replaced with a new artificial lens. Most patients have clear vision in days with no side effects.
How to Prevent Nuclear Sclerotic Cataracts
While you can’t keep yourself from getting older, you can help prevent senile nuclear sclerosis. These relatively simple lifestyle changes can greatly reduce your chances of developing nuclear sclerosis.
Eat a Nutritious Diet
One of the easiest ways to enhance eye health is to eat a well-balanced diet. To ensure proper nutrition for healthy eyes, be sure to include:
- Five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables per day
- At least three servings of 100% whole grains daily
- Two or more servings of oily cold-water fish such as salmon or tuna per week
Important antioxidants that may reduce the risk of cataracts can be found in fruits and vegetables containing vitamins A, C and E, lutein and zeaxanthin. Consumption of omega-3 fatty acids found in fish and flaxseeds has also been linked to possibly reducing the risk of developing a nuclear sclerotic cataract.
Dark green and colorful fruits and vegetables are great sources of eye-friendly antioxidants. Eat the rainbow and include nutrient-dense foods like kale, spinach, swiss chard, red bell peppers, eggs, citrus fruits, sweet potatoes and carrots. Seeds, nuts and legumes also boost eye health. Folic acid and calcium may help reduce the risk of cataracts and should also be included in an anti-nuclear sclerotic cataract healthy diet.
Maintain a Healthy Weight
It’s not just what you eat, but also how much. The impact of obesity on health is widespread. It contributes to cardiovascular disease, hypertension, stroke and diabetes. Obesity is associated with a 12% increase in the risk of developing nuclear sclerotic cataracts. Diabetes also has a serious effect on vision because excess blood sugar from diabetes can cause cataracts. Maintaining a healthy weight is an important factor in overall eye health.
Consider Taking Vitamins and Supplements
Even if you are trying to eat healthy, getting the proper nutrition from food alone can be hard. If you’re not eating enough fruits and vegetables, your diet may lack important nutrients necessary to protect your vision. It’s wise to consider taking one or more daily nutritional supplements to make sure you are getting all the nutrients you need for optimum eye health and to help reduce your risk of developing a nuclear sclerosis cataract. Consider adding an AREDS2 based supplement that includes the eye-healthy ingredients Taurine, Omega-3 from fish oil, Lutein/Zeaxanthin, Zinc, Antioxidants, Vitamins A, B6, D3, and Folic Acid.
Prior to starting a regimen of eye vitamins and nutritional supplements, make sure to consult your eye doctor. In some cases, taking too much of a specific vitamin or nutrient could be detrimental to your health or cause interactions with medications.
Wear Your Shades
There are 2 types of UV rays:
- UV-A rays damage your central vision.
- UV-B rays damage the cornea and lens on the front of your eye.
Be sure to choose sunglasses that block both types of rays 100%. The best sunglasses to help prevent nuclear sclerosis have UV protection embedded in the lens instead of being sprayed on, are large enough to cover your entire eye area and wrap around the sides. If you aren’t sure if your favorite sunglasses are actually protecting you, take them to an optometrist to test the lenses and be sure they provide the proper UV protection. And even if it’s a cloudy day, wear shades to protect your eyes because UV rays aren’t only out when the sun is.
Find Supplements to Support Eye Health
Maintaining a healthy weight, eating nutritious food and wearing sunglasses are all important steps in nuclear sclerotic cataract prevention. But with today’s busy lifestyles, getting the proper nutrition from food alone can be challenging. Discover how Focus Labs’ supplements for eye health, including O3 Maqui Vitamins, can help you maintain healthy vision.Shop Focus Labs Supplements