Can Smoking Increase Your Risk of Cataracts?

A cataract causes a clouding of the lens of the eye. For patients with cataracts, seeing through this lens leads to blurry vision. This can make it hard to read, do daily tasks, or drive, especially at night. Most of the time, cataracts develop slowly, which means that our professional team at Focal Point Vision can detect their development during an eye exam. Eyeglasses are one of the best ways to help our patients dealing with cataracts. However, some of our patients with impaired vision may choose to undergo cataract surgery in San Antonio, TX.

Cataract symptoms

Some common cataract symptoms include:

  • Cloudy or blurry vision

  • Increased difficulty seeing at night

  • Sensitivity to light

  • Seeing halos

  • Need for brighter light for reading

  • Double vision in one eye

Oftentimes, the cloudiness in your vision only affects a small portion of your eye. However, as the cataract grows, it will cloud more of the lens. At Focal Point Vision, we suggest you make an eye exam whenever you notice any changes in your vision.

Causes of cataracts

Most cataracts develop from the natural aging process or an injury, which causes changes to the tissue in your lens. Genetics can also play a part in cataract development as it can lead to some of our patients being more susceptible to cataracts. Past eye surgery, diabetes, and long-term use of steroids can all cause cataracts to develop too.

How do cataracts form?

The lens is positioned behind the colored part of the eye, the iris. The lens focuses on light that passes into the eye to provide clear images of the retina. As you age, your lens becomes less transparent and thicker. As a cataract develops, clouding will involve a larger portion of the lens. It can even block light, which results in blurry vision. Any changes in your vision usually are enough for most of our patients to visit our San Antonio, TX eye center.

Smoking effects on the eyes

When it comes to smoking and cataracts, our doctors recommend our patients quit smoking, especially those that are already at risk for developing them. Smoking can lead to vision loss as well as cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, and dry eye syndrome. Heavy smokers have up to three times the risk of developing cataracts.

Diagnosing and treating cataracts

At Focal Point Vision, we perform an eye examination with different tests that can determine whether you have a cataract. Visual acuity tests look at how well you can read letters. The slit-lamp examination allows us to see any abnormal structures on the front of your eye when it is magnified.

If we diagnose you with a cataract, our doctors can discuss treatment options that will benefit your eye health best. For less severe cases, we may suggest eyeglasses that help you to see better while driving at night. For other patients, we may suggest cataract surgery. At Focal Point Vision, we offer traditional cataract surgery and laser cataract surgery to help repair your vision.

Learn how smoking can cause cataracts

At Focal Point Vision, we perform regular eye examinations that help us detect the presence of cataracts in our patients in San Antonio, TX. When detected, we offer different treatments to repair your eye health, whether eyeglasses, laser cataract surgery, or traditional cataract surgery. When you notice changes in your vision, call our professional team to schedule an appointment as soon as possible.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.