Diabetes can affect the sight of those who suffer from it, to the point of losing their vision. An annual eye exam can help detect and treat the damage caused by diabetes by preventing or delaying blindness in 90 percent of cases, according to estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). ). You may be surprised to learn that not all diabetics examine their eyes as often as they should, despite knowing the consequences .
If you have diabetes, surely your doctor has made you aware of the risks of the disease in relation to the health of your eyes . In fact, it is one of the great enemies of vision. Diabetes is one of the leading causes of irreversible blindness worldwide . In the United States, for example, it is the leading cause of new cases of blindness diagnosed in adults between 20 and 74 years. About 20 million Americans have diabetes, so it is critical to have your eyes examined every year to reduce complications and the risk of developing glaucoma , cataracts, and other conditions such as macular edema.
An annual examination by an ophthalmologist is not much to ask to preserve something as valuable as sight. That’s why the results of an investigation, discovered by the American Diabetes Association ( American Diabetes Association), are surprising :
- Even though 96 percent of a group of adults with diabetes are aware that diabetes can lead to blindness, 20 percent of them have not had an eye exam in the past 12 months.
- Among the 97 percent of the group of diabetics who have ever had an eye exam after diagnosis, 13 percent admit they did not have a dilated test, as recommended.
- More than half of the group is not familiar with conditions such as retinopathy or macular edema.
What does this all mean? Well, a significant percentage of diabetic patients, even knowing the negative consequences of diabetes, do not take the necessary steps to protect their vision. It’s a big mistake that you should not commit.
How often do you need to check your vision?
With the view is not played. It is important that you follow your doctor’s recommendations. Below you will find those of the American Diabetes Association ( American Diabetes Association):
- If you are between 10 and 29 years old and have had diabetes for the past 5 years, you need an annual dilatation exam.
- If you are 30 or older, you should have an annual dilatation exam, no matter how long you have had diabetes. And if you have already developed any eye disease, you will need tests more frequently.
- If you notice any change in vision.
- If you are pregnant or plan a pregnancy.
Even if your family doctor checks your eyes, it’s not enough. Nor does it count that you go to optics to be measured by the graduation of your glasses (or glasses). Only ophthalmologists can detect signs of conditions such as retinopathy and only he or she can treat them. That you will not forget.
It is important that you go to the specialist if between one examination and another you experience one or more of the following symptom (s):
- You have blurred or cloudy vision
- It is difficult for you to read books or signs
- You hurt one or both eyes and / or redden
- Straight lines you see distorted
- You see double
- You feel pressure in your eyes
- You begin to see spots or spots that move (floating or flying flies)
- You lose peripheral vision (you do not see things well on the sides)
In addition to the annual eye exam, it is important that you try to keep your blood glucose level under control, as well as your blood pressure since hypertension can make vision problems worse . And if you smoke, please stop smoking. This will help keep your eyes healthy despite diabetes. Do not forget and start by calling the ophthalmologist to schedule your next visit.