People with diabetes may experience a variety of eye issues referred to as diabetic eye disease. Glaucoma, cataracts, diabetic macular edema, and diabetic retinopathy are some of these conditions. Diabetes can harm your eyes over time. Thus, this might result in blurry vision or even blindness. However, by managing your diabetes, you can take measures to stop diabetic eye problems from occurring or to stop it from growing worse.
Impact of Diabetic Eye Problems
Diabetes can result from having too much blood glucose, sometimes referred to as blood sugar, which can also injure your eyes. You are unlikely to experience visual loss as a result of high blood sugar in the short term.
The small blood veins in the back of your eyes may become damaged if your blood glucose levels continue to be high over time. The most frequent cause of serious diabetic eye diseases is blood vessel problems. The following four eye conditions may harm your vision:
Diabetic retinopathy is a condition that arises due to damaged blood vessels that injure the retina. Blood vessels may deteriorate, enlarge, or leak into the retina in early diabetic retinopathy.
As the condition worsens, certain blood vessels on the retina’s surface block off. This stimulates the growth or proliferation of new blood vessels. There may be major visual issues as a result of these unusually growing blood vessels.
Diabetic macular edema
Diabetes can cause diabetic macular edema, a swelling of the macula. This condition has the potential to gradually destroy this area of the eye’s keen vision. This results in partial blindness or vision loss. Macular edema typically appears in individuals with associated symptoms of diabetic retinopathy.
A collection of eye conditions refers to as glaucoma have the potential to harm the optic nerve, the bundle of neurons that links the eye to the brain. Glaucoma risk in those with diabetes is doubled. Thus, if left untreated, this might cause blindness and visual loss.
Cataracts, or unclear lenses, are more prone to form in people with diabetes. People with diabetes are more likely than those without to acquire cataracts early in life.
Symptoms of Diabetic Eye Problems
The early stages of diabetic eye disease frequently show no symptoms. When damage starts to occur inside your eyes, especially with diabetic retinopathy, you might not experience any discomfort or changes in your vision. When they do, the following symptoms might appear:
- Cloudy or wavering eyesight.
- Vision changes frequently—sometimes even throughout the day.
- vision loss or dark spots.
- A lack of color vision.
- Black streaks or threads, commonly known as floaters.
- Lightening strikes.
- If you experience any of these signs, speak with your eye doctor.
The best method to screen for diabetes-related eye issues is to get a comprehensive, dilated eye exam. To make your pupils bigger, your doctor will put drops in your eyes. This enables the physician to use a special magnifying lens. And to check a greater region at the rear of each eye. After a dilated exam, your vision will be cloudy for a few hours.
Your doctor will also check your eyes’ pressure and assess your eyesight. Depending on the history of your health, your doctor could also recommend further testing. The majority of diabetics should have a comprehensive eye checkup once a year with an eye care specialist. Depending on your type of diabetes and how long it has been since your first diagnosis, your personal healthcare team may recommend another approach.
Prevent vision loss by managing your blood pressure and blood sugar. Follow your nutritionist’s advice on a diet strictly. Take the medication that your doctor suggested for your diabetes. Sometimes, effective blood sugar management might even partially restore your vision. Moreover, maintaining a healthy blood pressure level protects the blood vessels in your eyes.
Anti-VEGF medications are a particular kind of medicine. Anti-VEGF medicine aids in reducing macula swelling, decreasing vision loss. Also, it may aid in enhancing eyesight. This medication is injected (shot) into the eye.
Another method to lessen macular swelling is steroid medication. Additionally, it is injected into the eye. The number of injections of medicine you will require over time will be advised by your doctor.
If blood vessels are leaking, laser surgery may be done to help stop them. This can lessen retinal edema. Additionally, laser surgery can help constrict blood arteries and stop them from reproducing. Occasionally. there is a requirement for multiple treatments.
Your ophthalmologist could advise vitrectomy surgery if you have advanced PDR. Blood and vitreous gel are taken out of your eye’s leaky vessels by your ophthalmologist. As a result, light beams may once more correctly concentrate on the retina. The removal of scar tissue from the retina is another option.
The Bottom Line
The possibility of developing diabetes-related retinopathy exists in everyone with diabetes. The dangerous eye problem has to be treated right now. It can cause visual loss and perhaps blindness if a person does not take treatment.
However, prompt therapy can halt the spread of the illness and stop visual loss. Keeping your blood sugar under control and treating your diabetes are the greatest ways to prevent the condition. Thus, if you experience any new changes in your eyesight, make an appointment with a healthcare professional.