One of the most common complications of diabetes is vision loss. However, the good news is that careful monitoring and regular eye exams, can help to preserve vision.
Get a vision exam. If you have diabetes, you are at a higher risk of developing eye diseases. Diabetic Retinopathy is a common complication of diabetes. It is a serious eye disorder caused by damage to the blood vessels in the back of the eye. In its earliest stages there may be no symptoms, so it is essential to have regular comprehensive eye exams. Your ophthalmologist or optometrist can detect early signs of eye disease and treatment can begin to help preserve your vision. If you notice any sudden changes to your vision, see an eyecare professional immediately.
Andrea Zimmerman, OD, a low vision specialist at Lighthouse Guild, says, “Having diabetes does not mean that you have to experience vision loss. Prevention is key to preserving your vision.”
Talk to your primary care doctor. If you have diabetes, many medications are available to help. Talk to your physician about a referral to an endocrinologist.
Take control. If you have diabetes or pre-diabetes, actively manage your health. Through Lighthouse Guild’s self-management diabetes education program, approved by the American Diabetes Association, a certified diabetes educator can teach you practical techniques and strategies for monitoring your blood sugar and taking your medications. Along with lifestyle changes, these may help you feel better. A registered dietician will help you with planning meals and making smart dietary choices.
Exercise. Regular exercise can help control your diabetes as well as help to keep your eyes stay as healthy as possible.
Join a support group. If you have diabetes, you aren’t alone. You can join a diabetes support group and learn from people who are in the same situation and understand what you are facing. Share your experience and what you have learned and get support from others.
About Lighthouse Guild
Lighthouse Guild is the leading organization dedicated to addressing and preventing vision loss. We provide coordinated care for eye health, vision rehabilitation and behavioral health as well as related services directed at prevention, early detection and intervention of vision disorders. Reducing the burdens of vision loss is the cornerstone of what we do. For more information, visit lighthouseguild.org
Tips from Lighthouse Guild to Help Avoid Vision Loss from Diabetes
November Is Diabetes Awareness Month