The Connection Between Diabetes and Eye Health

Jun 1, 2023 | Eye Health Info

Weeden Eye Clinic 662-539-7801

Corinth Eye Clinic 662-286-8860

If you have diabetes, it’s crucial to understand the connection between your chronic condition and your eye health. Diabetes can damage your eyes, and often, this damage can occur without any noticeable symptoms. That’s why regular eye exams are crucial to ensuring early detection of issues before vision loss occurs. In this post, we’ll explore the connection between diabetes and eye health and why it’s critical to schedule regular eye exams.  

1. Diabetic retinopathy 

Diabetic retinopathy is the most common eye problem associated with diabetes. It occurs when high blood sugar levels damage the blood vessels in the retina, the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye. This can lead to blurry or distorted vision, and in severe cases, blindness. 

Monitoring your blood sugar levels, getting regular eye exams, and following your doctor’s treatment plan can help reduce the risk of developing diabetic retinopathy. If you have diabetic retinopathy, your eye doctor may recommend laser treatment, injections, or surgery to prevent further damage to your eyes. 

2. Cataracts 

A cataract is a clouding of the natural lens in the eye, which can cause blurred vision, glare, and difficulty seeing at night. While anyone can develop cataracts as they get older, people with diabetes are at a higher risk of developing them. 

Cataract surgery is a common and safe procedure that can remove the clouded lens and replace it with an artificial one. If you have diabetes and develop cataracts, our eye doctors at Weeden & Corinth Eye Clinic can monitor your vision with more frequent eye exams and prescribe new eyeglasses to help restore blurry vision. If surgery is needed, we can refer you to an expert eye surgeon and co-manage your eye health care.  

3. Glaucoma 

Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that damage the optic nerve, which sends visual messages from the eyes to the brain. High eye pressure is often related to glaucoma, but glaucoma can happen with normal eye pressure as well.  If left untreated, glaucoma can cause vision loss or even blindness. People with diabetes are at a higher risk of developing a specific type of glaucoma called neovascular glaucoma, which is caused by the growth of abnormal blood vessels in the eye. 

The best way to prevent glaucoma is to get regular eye exams and follow your doctor’s recommendations for treatment. If you have glaucoma, your eye doctor may recommend eye drops, laser treatment, or surgery to lower your eye pressure and preserve your vision. 

4. Other eye problems 

People with diabetes are also at a higher risk of developing other eye problems, such as dry eye, retinal detachment, and macular edema. These conditions can cause discomfort, blurry vision, and even blindness if left untreated. To reduce your risk of these eye problems, it’s important to control your blood sugar levels, maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle, and see an eye doctor regularly.  

At Weeden & Corinth Eye Clinic, our eye doctors offer comprehensive diabetic eye exams to check for early signs of diabetic eye disease or potential problems. If we notice any issues, we have a variety of treatment options available to prevent vision loss and slow down the progression of the condition. Contact us today to schedule an appointment and learn how we can help you protect your vision for years to come!