Diabetes can play havoc with your eyes, and sometimes there are no early sumptoms. So you may have no idea anything is wrong until your eyesight is in danger.
Here are the main eye problems that can be caused, or made worse, by diabetes.
These are often described as a clouding of the lens of the eye. They are treatable by surgery in most cases.
Our eyes are largely made up of fluid, and when the pressure of that fluid builds up too much inside the eye, you have glaucoma. Left untreated, it can damage the optic nerves, and even lead to blindness.
Lining the back of our eyes is light-sensitive tissue known as the retina. The retina contains very small blood vessels that can be damaged by diabetic retinopathy. Sometimes there are symptoms such as blurred vision, but often you won't even know anything is wrong until the condition is well advanced. In the worse case, it leads to blindness.
Early detection is the key to battling all of these conditions, and the best diagnostic tool available is the dilated eye examination. This is a test in which special eye drops temporarily enlarge your pupils, allowing the doctor to see the back of your eyes. This test (which is painless) can detect cataracts, glaucoma or diabetic retinopathy in their early, treatable stages.
Eyesight is precious, so if you have diabetes do yourself a favor and make an appointment for your dilated eye examination. And then do it again every year from now on.
Diabetes Eye Care
Diabetes can harm your eyes. It can damage the small blood vessels in your retina, which is the back part of your eye. This condition is called diabetic retinopathy. Diabetes also increases your risk of having glaucoma, cataracts, and other eye problems.
You may not know there is any damage to your eyes until the problem is very bad. Your health care provider can catch problems early if you get regular eye exams.
If your provider finds eye problems early, medicines and other treatments may help prevent them from getting worse.
Every year, you should have an eye exam by an eye doctor (ophthalmologist or optometrist). Choose an eye doctor who takes care of people with diabetes.
Your eye exam may include:
- Dilating your eyes to allow a good view of the entire retina. Only an eye doctor can do this exam.
- At times, special photographs of your retina may replace the dilated eye exam. This is called digital retinal photography.
Your eye doctor may ask you to come more or less often than once a year.
How to Prevent Eye Problems
Control your blood sugar levels. High blood sugar increases your chance of having eye problems.
High blood sugar can also cause blurred vision that is not related to diabetic retinopathy. This kind of blurred vision is caused by having too much sugar and water in the lens of the eye, which is in front of the retina.
Control your blood pressure:
- Blood pressure less than 140/90 is a good goal for people with diabetes. Your provider may tell you that your pressure needs to be lower than 140/90.
- Have your blood pressure checked often and at least twice each year.
- If you take medicines to control your blood pressure, take them as your doctor instructs.
DO NOT smoke. If you need help quitting, ask your provider.
If you already have eye problems, ask your provider if you should avoid exercises that can strain the blood vessels in your eyes. Exercises that may make eye problems worse include:
- Weight lifting and other exercises that make you strain
- High-impact exercise, such as football or hockey
Make It Easier for Yourself at Home
If your vision is affected by diabetes, make sure your home is safe enough that your chance of falling is low. Ask your doctor about having a home assessment done. For people with diabetes, the combination of poor vision and nerve problems in the legs and feet can affect balance. This increases the chance of falling.
If you cannot read the labels on your medicines easily:
- Use felt tip pens to label medicine bottles so you can read them easily.
- Use rubber bands or clips to tell medicine bottles apart.
- Ask someone else to give you your medicines.
- Always read labels with a magnifying lens.
- Use a pillbox with compartments for days of the week and times of the day, if you need to take medicines more than once a day.
Never guess when taking your medicines. If you are unsure of your doses, talk with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.
There are simple things you can do to keep your eyes healthy and make sure you have best of the visions of this beautiful world.
But how often do you get good eye care guides at a single page?
We are sharing some great eye care tips with you, read them to improve your eyesight and make your eyes attractive.