One of the leading causes of blindness in Canadian adults is diabetes due to a lack of proper care and regular eye exams. Diabetes can affect your vision in a number of ways that range in severity but all require a visit to your eye doctor and proper treatment.
The Canadian Diabetes Association states that “people with diabetes are more likely to develop cataracts at a younger age and are twice as likely to develop glaucoma, but diabetes’ effect on the retina is the main threat to vision.”
Essentially, diabetics can most commonly be affected by retinopathy, which is a disease of the retina that causes loss of vision. It is a manifestation of diabetes in the eye that tends to have no early indicators, but puts all individuals suffering from Type I and Type II Diabetes at risk.
Retinopathy refers to the changes the retina experiences if affected by diabetes. A macular edema is a type of change that can occur when the macula (a part of the retina that helps you see colour) swells and potentially leads to blindness. Another form of retinopathy is in the form of a growth of weak blood vessels within the eye that eventually break. They can block the retina so it cannot project images properly to your brain and results in loss of sight.
Diabetes can also change the way the tiny blood vessels that nourish the retina function. These vessels can begin to leak and cause small hemorrhages that can lead to swelling and poor, blurry vision. According to the Canadian Diabetes Association, about 1 in 4 people with diabetes experience this with their eyesight.
If you suffer from diabetes, make sure you take special, preventative care for your eyes. Schedule regular appointments with your eye care professional and take a sudden onset of blurred vision, flashes of light, vision loss or the appearance of spots in your vision seriously.
Hakim Optical cares about your eye health and maintaining good vision. We have Eye Exam Centres in many of our locations across the country where you can schedule an appointment for a comprehensive eye exam with an optometrist. To learn more about how diabetes can affect your vision, click here.
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Source: Canadian Diabetes Association http://www.diabetes.ca/diabetes-and-you/complications/eye-damage-diabetic-retinopathy