What eye care problems are caused by diabetes?

 Retinopathy: Retinopathy is a serious eye disease that is caused by high blood sugars over a long period of time. Over time high blood sugar levels damage the many blood vessels in the eye causing them to bleed. High blood pressure can also increase the risk of retinopathy. If this condition is not treated, it can lead to blindness.

 Cataracts: A clouding of the lens of the eye.

 Glaucoma: Increased pressure in the eye. Glaucoma can cause blindness.

 Blurry vision: High blood sugar can make vision blurry.

What can diabetics do to help prevent or delay eye problems?

 See an eye doctor at least once a year.

Only a special eye exam can detect early signs of retinopathy.

 Keep blood sugar levels under control.

Get regular exercise.

Lose weight if overweight

Eat a healthy diet.

 Keep blood pressure normal.

Normal blood pressure should be under 140/90.

 Stop smoking.

Smoking increases blood sugar levels making it harder to control.

Smoking increases blood pressure.

Some studies have shown that smoking can increase the chances of getting retinopathy

When should diabetics see their health care provider?

If they are having blurry vision.

If they are having trouble reading signs or books.

If they are seeing double.

If their eyes hurt.

If they are feeling pressure in the eye.

If their eyes get red and stay red.

If they see spots or flashing lights.

If straight lines don't look straight.

If they can't see things from the side like they used to.

What treatments are there for eye diseases?

 Treatments of eye disease are usually laser surgery to restore and prevent more vision loss. In the case of glaucoma, pills or eye drops may be used.



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