Diabetes can cause a lot of problems, but one of the most serious is diabetic retinopathy—a condition that causes damage to the blood vessels in your retina. And while it can cause vision problems and even blindness over time, you may not notice any symptoms until it’s too late.
Read on as a Camarillo, CA optometrist discusses diabetic retinopathy and warning signs to watch for.
Diabetic retinopathy is a disease of the retina, the light-sensitive tissue at the back of your eye. It’s caused by damage to blood vessels in your retina that can lead to vision loss and blindness.
Diabetic retinopathy happens when high blood sugar levels damage the tiny blood vessels in your retina. The damage can cause scarring and swelling of these small vessels, which blocks or damages the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the retina. This can lead to vision loss and even blindness if left untreated.
The symptoms of diabetes-related retinopathy are often subtle and can change over time. They include:
If you’re a diabetic, you know that it’s not always easy to manage your condition. It takes constant vigilance, constant testing, and constant attention to detail.
But what about the long-term effects of diabetes on your eyes? If you’re not checking your blood glucose levels or keeping tabs on your hemoglobin A1C results, how can you protect yourself from eye damage caused by diabetes?
The answer is simple: regular eye exams.
For diabetics, the signs of increasing diabetic retinopathy risk begin slowly. By the time patients experience vision problems from diabetes, most have gone through diagnosis and problematic blood glucose self-test results; they’ve also experienced small blood vessel issues in their retinas that only their eye doctor can see during routine diabetic eye exams.
The good news is there’s always a chance to take action to control your condition and seek proper eye treatment—but only if you have a plan in place!
If you have more questions or wish to schedule an eye exam, please don’t hesitate to call our Camarillo, CA optometry office anytime.