Did you know that diabetes is the leading cause of adult-onset blindness? But with yearly eye exams to monitor your eye health, it doesn’t have to be.
If you are diagnosed with diabetes, here are some things you can do to improve your overall eye health:
- Maintain excellent A1C levels
- Keep blood pressure and other health factors in check
- Be vigilant with eye exams
Make sure you’re going for an annual eye exam. Your eye exam should be very thorough (some take up to two and a half hours.) The doctor will be dilating your pupils with eye drops to get a clear look. The exam won’t be painful but you’ll want to bring sunglasses, as the dilation will increase light sensitivity.
It could also be beneficial to have the doctor take validated photos of your retinas (the inside of your eyes) to get the clearest picture of your eye health.
Diabetic retinopathy is the most common eye disease for people with diabetes and may be one of the first things that your ophthalmologist looks for. It occurs when the small blood vessels in the eye are damaged by high levels of glucose in the blood. Although there is a variety of treatments for diabetic retinopathy, the earlier it is diagnosed the more effective the treatment is.
Be an active participant in your eye health—don’t neglect your annual eye exam.