If you have diabetes, protecting your eyes should be uppermost in your mind, and you should make sure to schedule regular eye exams with your ophthalmologist. People with diabetes are at risk for a number of serious eye problems, such as diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma. Understanding how diabetes can affect your vision is therefore vital to safeguarding the health of your eyes.
What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is the result of the body’s inability to produce sufficient amounts of insulin, or use it efficiently. Insulin is a hormone that plays a key role in the body’s ability to metabolize certain foods, particularly sugar and carbohydrates. When insulin levels are unstable, blood glucose is high, and this gives rise to diabetes.
How diabetes can affect your vision
Diabetes can damage the blood vessels that support the retina, leading to diabetic retinopathy. This is the most common eye disease attributed to diabetes. The presence of diabetes can result in the inflammation or leakage of the blood vessels. If this condition is not treated it can cause vision loss (learn more).
Glaucoma and cataracts can also be caused by diabetes. Glaucoma results from a build-up of pressure in the eye, due to the inadequate drainage of fluid. This can end up damaging the optic nerve. People with diabetes often develop open angle glaucoma.
Although cataracts are common among the over 60 population, people with diabetes often develop the condition at a much younger age. A cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye, which leads to diminished vision. It very often requires surgery to replace the affected lens with an intraocular lens implant or IOL.
Contact the Center for Ophthalmology and Laser Surgery, Lighthouse Point, FL, to learn more about how diabetes can affect your vision. Why not give them a call today at 954-786-5353, and schedule an appointment with Dr. Michael Loeffler.