3 Ways To Reduce Your Risk Of Eye Diseases Related to Diabetes

Posted on: 25 April 2019

Uncontrolled diabetes has substantial health risks, both acute and chronic. One organ that is especially sensitive the effects of diabetes is your eye. Having diabetes does not mean that developing eye problems is guaranteed and completely beyond your control. Read on for more information on eye diseases related to diabetes.

Aim For Reversal

If you have type 2 diabetes, your ultimate goal should be to reverse the condition, which is possible for many people. In the meantime, your doctor will prescribe medications to keep your blood glucose under control, hopefully preventing serious acute complications. Most people who are in the earlier stages of type 2 diabetes can successfully lower their blood glucose with oral medications and lifestyle changes. Without making significant lifestyle changes, it becomes harder to manage your blood glucose without taking more medications or becoming reliant on injectable insulin. Some people with diabetes find that significant weight loss, sometimes with the help of surgery, reverses their diabetes.

Know The Influence Of Food

Not only can your diet have a drastic impact on your blood glucose and weight, but it can also benefit your eyes. Initially, focus on establishing a diet that aims to regulate your blood glucose by minimizing sugar and foods that spike insulin levels. This means processed foods and simple carbohydrates need to be reduced or eliminated. Even foods that are considered healthy, such as fruits and starchy carbs, need to be limited to perhaps a single serving per day or less. You should integrate foods that are known to have eye health benefits, such as colorful vegetables. The more color you add to your diet in the form of non-starchy vegetables, the easier it is to incorporate eye-healthy nutrients and antioxidants that have protective benefits.

See An Eye Specialist

Regular eye exams for vision screenings may not be enough when you have diabetes since some conditions may not show up on routine vision screenings. You should talk to your primary doctor about how often you need to see an eye specialist. Depending on your past history with diabetes-related eye problems, such as cataracts, diabetic retinopathy, or glaucoma, your doctor might advise you to make annual visits to an ophthalmologist instead of or in addition to an optometrist. You should also be aware of any symptoms that warrant an urgent visit to your ophthalmologist or another healthcare provider, such as sudden vision loss, eye pain, or the presence of significant floaters. Knowing the warning signs of serious, vision-threatening conditions may increase your chances at preserving your vision.

Just as you need to make changes to protect your heart, kidneys, and brain when you have diabetes, you need to take care of your eyes. A combination of blood glucose control and proactively caring for your eyes can reduce the likelihood of diabetes-related eye conditions. Reach out to an ophthalmology clinic near you to learn more.