how diabetes threatens visionDiabetes is one of the biggest threats to a healthy lifestyle – and unfortunately, many Americans are at risk of this all-too-common disease.  Diabetes is a serious disease that affects how the body uses and produces insulin, which is used to control glucose levels.  Diabetes often results in high glucose levels which remain within the body, thus causing significant damage to the heart, kidneys, liver, and blood vessels, as well as the blood vessels that can be found within the eye.

That’s why it’s so important for individuals to learn how to protect their vision from diabetes.  Diabetes can lead to vision impairment and even total blindness, which is why individuals should educate themselves regarding how diabetes can threaten vision:

  • As glucose levels fluctuate, this can cause the shape of your eyes to change quickly, which can cause blurry vision that goes away once your blood sugar levels are normal.  If you often experience blurry vision for no apparent reason, it’s important to schedule a visit with your ophthalmologist as soon as possible.
  • When diabetes causes the blood vessels to contract, swell, or close off altogether, this can cause vision loss.  Diabetes can also cause abnormal veins to grow on the surface of the retina, which can also impact vision.  These conditions are known as diabetic retinopathy.
  • Diabetes is one of the highest factors for vision loss among the Hispanic, Native American, and African-American communities.
  • Diabetes can also cause permanent blurring of vision, as this disease makes it easier for cataracts to develop.  If you have developed cataracts, it’s important to undergo cataract surgery to improve and restore your vision.

Don’t let diabetes rob you of your vision and eye health.  Be sure to eat a healthy diet that’s rich in fruits, vegetables, and lean meats, as well as getting plenty of exercise.  If you’re overweight or obese, make a commitment to lose weight, as this can drastically cut down on your risk of getting diabetes.

Dr. Jacqueline Griffiths of NewView Eye Center in Reston, VA , serving the DC metro and all of Northern Virginia, also wants to remind patients to undergo regular checkups with their ophthalmologists. To schedule your next appointment please complete the form in the top right corner or call 703-834-9777.