Diabetes not only affects overall health, but can impact eyesight in many ways. Those with diabetes are more likely to develop eye diseases such as glaucoma and cataracts. As such, it is important for diabetic patients to clearly understand how to protect their eyesight for the long-term. As part of National Diabetes Month, we present the following guide to protecting eye health in diabetic patients.
Undergo an Eye Exam Once a Year
A critical step in protecting their future eyesight is for diabetic patients to undergo a dilated eye exam at least once per year. This exam will help the ophthalmologist identify potential eye disease issues and ensure any problems are immediately addressed before they become a lasting challenge. Regularly meeting with a specialist will also provide time for the patient to have their questions and concerns addressed by someone with experience analyzing eye diseases.
Keep Blood Sugar Under Control
As with most aspects of diabetes, it is most important to keep blood sugar under control to minimize the potential for diabetes-related diseases. The latest data shows that those with greater control over their blood sugar levels experience fewer problems with their eyes as they age.
Maintain Blood Pressure
Controlling blood pressure is also an important element in protecting the eye health of diabetic patients. Studies continue to show the link between high blood pressure and eye disease. Those with high blood pressure are at risk of damaging the tiny blood vessels in their retina, which can lead to diabetic retinopathy and can cause retinal muscles to weaken over time. If the condition is not addressed by a specialist, permanent vision loss can be the result.
Commit to an Exercise Regimen
We know the clear value that exercise has on our heart health and brain function. But new research also shows that exercise is crucial in protecting our eyes and mitigating the impact of diabetic-related eye diseases. Regular exercise can assist the patient in remaining as healthy as possible, and can reduce the potential for complications resulting from their diabetes. It is important to work with a specialist in creating a safe and healthy exercise regimen.
Contact Our Office
Our trusted eye health team is here to guide you in building your ideal eye health protection strategy. To learn more about this issue and National Diabetes Month, contact our office today.