Can Diabetes Affect the Eyes?

Can Diabetes Affect the Eyes?

Can Diabetes Affect the Eyes?

Can Diabetes Affect the Eyes?

Can Diabetes Affect the Eyes?

Can Diabetes Affect the Eyes?

If you have diabetes, you should schedule regular visits to your eye doctor at Wear Eyewear. Diabetes can damage the eyes over time, causing vision loss or even total blindness. High blood sugar can cause issues, such as blurry vision, and lead to serious eye diseases. 

Fortunately, managing diabetes can help prevent vision and eye health issues or stop them from worsening. Early diagnosis and treatment can help protect your eyes. 


Diabetic Retinopathy 

Diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of vision loss among seniors with diabetes. The condition occurs when high blood sugar causes damage to the retina's blood vessels. The damaged blood vessels often swell and leak, stopping blood flow and causing blurry vision. 

In some cases, new blood vessels grow, but they are abnormal and often cause additional vision issues. Diabetic retinopathy typically affects both eyes. 



Cataracts are a common condition that affects people with diabetes. A cataract is a clouding of the clear eye lens. While clouding of the lens may result from aging eyes, people with diabetes can get cataracts while younger. 

High blood sugar leads to the buildup of deposits on the eye lens, causing it to be cloudy. Surgery is the only way to treat cataracts, but this does not have to be performed immediately. During the early stages, making some changes can help improve vision. 



Glaucoma is a condition that causes damage to the optic nerve. The irreversible disease is usually due to excessive eye pressure. Most types of glaucoma do not have symptoms in the early stages. 

Vision loss happens gradually, and most people do not realize they have an issue until the advanced stages. People with diabetes have a high risk of developing open-angle glaucoma, the most common type. Diabetes can also lead to neovascular glaucoma. 


Ways to Prevent Eye Diseases 

If you have diabetes, there are things that you can do to prevent eye diseases or protect your vision. They include:


  • Scheduling regular diabetic eye exams

  • Maintaining your blood sugar levels in the target range

  • Keeping your blood pressure and cholesterol within normal range

  • Staying active through regular exercise or physical activity

  • Avoiding smoking

  • Getting an education on diabetes self-management


Diabetic Eye Exams 

Getting their eyes checked is vital for people with diabetes. Diabetic eye exams can help detect eye diseases early when treatment is most effective. An annual dilated eye exam can help identify and diagnose eye problems. 

Screening is vital for conditions that do not have symptoms in the early stages, which is when they are treatable. Annual exams, combined with controlling diabetes, can help prevent vision problems. 

Diabetes is a leading cause of blindness. If you have diabetes and experience blurry vision, you should visit your eye doctor. It can be a sign of a more severe eye issue. It would be best to look for symptoms such as black spots, light flashes, and gaps or holes in the vision. 

For more on how diabetes can affect the eyes, visit Wear Eyewear at our Chicago or Orland Park, Illinois office. Call (312) 626-0036 or (708) 349-9327 to schedule an appointment today.

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