Diabetes is a chronic medical condition that affects the way your body uses glucose (sugar) in the blood. But did you know that diabetes can also have an impact on the health of your eyes? To fully understand the implications of diabetes on eye health and take appropriate measures, it is recommended to consult a healthcare professional for regular eye examinations.

Diabetes and Eye Health

Diabetic retinopathy: Diabetic retinopathy is one of the most common complications of diabetes and can lead to vision loss if left untreated. This condition affects the blood vessels in the retina, the part of the eye that captures light and sends signals to the brain. Symptoms of diabetic retinopathy can include blurred vision, black spots or dots in the field of vision, and difficulty seeing at night.

Glaucoma: People with diabetes are also more likely to develop glaucoma, a disease that damages the optic nerve and can lead to irreversible vision loss. Glaucoma is often called the "silent thief of sight" because it can progress without apparent symptoms until permanent damage occurs. 

Cataracts: People with diabetes are more likely to develop cataracts, which are opacities of the eye's lens that lead to blurred or cloudy vision. Cataracts can be treated with lens replacement surgery if they significantly affect vision.

Prevention and management: 

  • Control your blood glucose: Keeping blood glucose levels as close to normal as possible can help reduce the risk of diabetes-related eye complications.
  • Regular eye examinations: Regular eye examinations are essential to detect eye health problems such as diabetic retinopathy at an early stage when treatment is most effective.
  • Managing blood pressure and cholesterol: Controlling blood pressure and cholesterol levels can also help reduce the risk of diabetes-related eye complications.

Diabetes can significantly impact eye health, but with proper blood glucose management and regular eye exams, you can reduce your risk of developing eye complications. If you have diabetes, talk to your optometrist about how to protect your eye health.