Too many people are not aware that diabetes increases the chances vision loss. Diabetes is the primary cause of total vision loss in individuals between the ages of 20 and 74 according to recent studies by the National Institute of Health. One of the most serious complications of diabetes is when the retina is damaged by an increase in pressure in the blood vessels of the eye. This is called diabetic retinopathy. This condition is a particularly serious complication of the disease and it is projected to affect 11 million people by 2030.
Diabetic retinopathy is often undetected until significant damage is done. Loss of sight ultimately develops when the blood vessels in the retina begin to leak fluid, oil and small amounts of blood into the retina. As the disease develops, blood vessels may be blocked or new unwanted vessels may grow on the retina leading to permanent loss of sight.
If you have diabetes and you notice any sort of vision problems, such as fluctuations in eyesight, floaters, double vision, shadows or spots or any pain in your eye make sure to see an optometrist. Cataracts and glaucoma are also more common in individuals with diabetes than in the average population.
All diabetic eye diseases are more damaging when glucose levels are uncontrolled. Carefully monitoring your sugar levels through diet, exercise and staying healthy and annual eye exams is the best defense for preventing vision loss.
If you or a loved one has diabetes, be sure you know the risks of diabetic retinopathy and other eye risks and speak to your optometrist to discuss questions or concerns. In this case, ignorance could cost you your precious eyesight