A cataract is a clouding of the eye’s natural lens, which lies behind the iris and the pupil.
Working much like a camera lens, the eye’s lens focuses light onto the retina at the back of the eye. As we age, some of the protein that makes up the lens changes and starts to cloud a small area of the lens. This is a cataract. Over time, it may grow larger and cloud more of the lens, making it harder to see.
In the normal eye, light enters through the lens and focuses on the retina.
In eyes with cataracts, the cataract clouds the lens, preventing light from being focused properly on the retina.
We don’t know for sure why the protein in your eye changes, forming cataracts. Studies suggest that exposure to ultraviolet light is associated with cataract development, so we recommend wearing sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat to lessen your exposure to the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays.
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