World Diabetes Day is November 14, and the campaign for 2016 is "Eye with Diabetes", the reason being that more than 400 million people live with diabetes today. Diabetes can lead to eye disease that can cause blindness if not detected early. Detection of complications is important to ensure optimum health.
Diabetes can damage small blood vessels in the retina, the back of the eye. This is known as diabetic retinopathy, which increases the risk of having glaucoma, cataracts and other eye problems.
How often should I have eye exams?
Whether you have already been diagnosed or your family has a case with diabetes, it is advisable to visit the ophthalmologist at least once a year. It is very important to tell you the reason for your visit so that you are aware of any changes in the review.
What examination or test should the ophthalmologist perform?
The dilation of the eyes to allow a good view of the entire retina. Only an ophthalmologist can do this test.
Sometimes, special photographs of the back of the eye
How can I prevent vision problems?
Check blood sugar levels.
High blood sugar levels increase the risk of vision problems.
You must control your blood pressure. If you take any medication to control it, it is very important to follow your doctor's instructions
If you already have eye problems, ask your doctor if you should avoid some exercises that can strain the blood vessels in your eyes. These exercises can make eye problems worse.
Avoid straining eyes, if you send lenses use them.
If you notice a deterioration in the eyes see your doctor immediately.
7 tips to keep your eyes healthy and prevent eye diseases if you have diabetes
To keep your vision sharp, you must take good care of your health to prevent vision problems related to diabetes.
Over time, high blood sugar level can damage small blood vessels in the eyes. That can lead to a condition called diabetic retinopathy. High blood sugar can also lead to cataracts and glaucoma, these occur earlier and more often in people with diabetes.
Use these 7 strategies to manage diabetes and protect your eyes:
- Schedule appointments with your eye doctor at least once a year so that any problem can be detected early and can be treated on time. During the exam, your ophthalmologist will use special drops to enlarge ("dilate") the pupils and check the blood vessels in the eyes during the first signs of damage.
- Maintain control of glucose in the blood. If you keep your blood sugar levels stable, you can slow the damage done to small blood vessels in the eyes. Several times a year, you must have a blood test A1c, which shows glucose levels in the last 2 or 3 months. Your result should be around 7% or less.
- Keep your blood pressure under control. High blood pressure can lead to eye diseases. If you have high blood pressure and diabetes, you need to be even more careful about how to handle those conditions. Ask your doctor to check your blood pressure at each visit. For most people with diabetes, it should be less than 140/80.
- Check your cholesterol levels. All you need is a blood test to find out how much "bad" cholesterol (LDL) and "good" cholesterol (HDL) you have. Excess LDL is linked to damage of blood vessels.
- Eat healthy. Choose fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins. If they turn out to be a big change for you, you can seek advice from a nutritionist. You can also ask your doctor for advice about when to eat and how good to take insulin.
- Do not smoke. Smoking causes problems with your blood vessels, which makes you more likely to develop eye problems. It is not easy to quit, so do not hesitate to ask your doctor for help. Or go to a support group or quit program.
- Move more. Exercise can have a great influence on blood sugar. If you use insulin or medicines to lower blood sugar, ask your doctor when to check your levels, whether before or during your workouts. Also ask what type of training works best for you.