Maintain close-to-normal blood glucose (sugar) levels.
High blood glucose damages the blood vessels in the eyes. This damage can result in swelling in the retina and the development of abnormal blood vessels that may bleed and form scar tissue. Additionally, when blood glucose levels are too high, the shape of the eye’s lens can be affected, causing blurry vision that goes back to normal after the blood glucose levels are stabilized.
Maintain healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
High blood pressure and high cholesterol can increase the risk of eye disease and vision loss. Keeping both under control will help the eyes as well as overall health. .
Regular exercise can help the eyes stay as healthy as possible while helping to control blood glucose levels. The best way to prevent vision loss from diabetes is through careful management.
Get a comprehensive dilated eye examination from your ophthalmologist once a year, regardless of your age.
In its early stages, diabetic retinopathy often has no symptoms. A dilated eye exam allows ophthalmologists – medical doctors who specialize in the diagnosis and medical and surgical treatment of eye diseases – to examine the retina and optic nerve more thoroughly for signs of damage before changes in vision occur.
Regular monitoring of eye health allows ophthalmologists to begin treatment as soon as possible if signs of disease do appear. Women with diabetes who become pregnant may need additional eye exams throughout their pregnancy, as pregnancy can sometimes worsen diabetic retinopathy .
Smokers are at an increased risk for diabetic retinopathy and other diabetes-related eye diseases.