Diabetes Can Cause Eye Damage
November is National Diabetes Month, an opportunity to bring attention to diabetes and diabetes-related complications. Chronic diseases like diabetes require consistent monitoring because they affect multiple systems in the body. Unmanaged diabetes can cause many complications with the heart, nerves, kidneys, hands and feet.
Diabetes can also contribute to vision problems like cataracts. Cataracts are the leading cause of vision loss among adults 55 and older. About one in every six adults has a developing cataract by the age of 40, and over half of all adults have a cataract by the age of 70.
Individuals with diabetes are much more likely to develop cataracts than those who do not have the disease, and their cataracts tend to develop at a younger age and progress much faster. If you have diabetes, you can help prevent or delay vision loss by making regular visits to your eye doctor for comprehensive eye exams. Yearly eye exams will help maintain your vision and monitor cataract development. By controlling your blood sugar, managing your weight and taking your medication regularly, you can reduce the risk of developing cataracts.
Cataract Surgery Can Restore Vision Loss
The good news is that cataracts are treatable with surgery. In fact, many people claim that cataract surgery provided them with the clearest vision they have ever experienced.
In a simple procedure that usually takes less than 30 minutes, a skilled surgeon can replace your clouded lens with a clear, intraocular lens (IOL) that is customized to your specific prescription. There are many types of IOLs, so your eye doctor will help you choose the right one before your surgery. Among your choices are monofocal, toric or multifocal.
Visit Your Eye Doctor
Your vision is important, so make it a priority during National Diabetes Month. An eye exam provides much more than just a check-up on your vision. Your eye health is a good indicator of your overall wellness, so visit your eye doctor regularly. Your eye doctor can also provide support and information if you recently received a diabetes diagnosis. There are several lifestyle changes you can make to prevent cataracts, so ask for helpful tips at your eye appointment.
Our qualified ophthalmologists are ready to partner with you to maintain your vision health. Use our Find a Physician tool by clicking here and entering your zip code at the top of the page. You will find a list of board-certified physicians in your area.