14 November is World Diabetes Day.  Diabetes can have serious health complications, including diabetic eye disease.  Known as diabetic retinopathy, this eye disease progresses silently and typically presents with no symptoms in the early stage.

Diabetes generally is classified as two types:

diabetesdayboyType 1 diabetes: Insulin is a natural hormone that helps regulate the levels of blood sugar needed to help “feed” your body. When you are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, you are considered insulin-dependent as you will need injections or other medications to supply the insulin your body is unable to produce on its own. When you don’t produce enough of your own insulin, your blood sugar is unregulated and levels are too high. This leads to the weakening of the blood vessel walls in your body and causes illness.                                      
Type 2 diabetes:  With this type of diabetes, you produce enough insulin but your body is unable to make proper use of it. Your body then compensates by producing even more insulin, but as the cells are not able to use the insulin – blood sugar levels increase.
With both types of diabetes, abnormal spikes in blood sugar increase your risk of diabetic retinopathy. Research proved that stabilizing you blood sugar with dietary change, increased physical activity and consistent use of your medication, damage to your health can be limited to a minimum.

Many people experience blurred vision in the early stages of diabetes. This blurred vision is caused by fluid seeping into the lens of the eye and causing the lens to swell, changing its shape and altering its ability to focus properly. Once diabetes treatment begins and blood glucose is under control, the lens resumes its normal shape and vision improves.


Blurred vision also can occur early in insulin treatment or with fluctuating blood glucose levels. Again, fluids in the body are shifting, and fluid may enter or leave the lens. If you have this condition, be patient and see us for assistance to help you through this phase without spending a small fortune on glasses that will need change soon. The condition is not permanent and usually lasts only a few days or weeks. As you gain control of your diabetes and blood glucose gets closer to normal, your vision should improve. (If not, see us as soon as possible for a check on your eye health.) Once your blood glucose level settles and your vision stabilizes we assist with the appropriate spectacle prescription.

Symptoms of Diabetic Retinopathy and other Diabetes-Related Eye Problems:

  • Fluctuating vision
  • Eye floaters and hazy spots
  • Development of an area of less sensitive vision or shadow in your field of view
  • Blurry and/or distorted vision
  • Corneal abnormalities such as slow healing of wounds due to corneal abrasions
  • Double Vision
  • Eye pain
  • Near vision problems unrelated to normal age changes in the eye lens (presbyopia)
  • Cataracts

Prevention Tips:

  •  “Know your number” Ask your doctor what your ideal blood sugar level should be and try to maintain it all cost
  • Monitor blood pressure and keep it under good control
  • Maintain a healthy diet that supports the consistency of your blood
  • Exercise regularly
  • Don’t smoke – smoking hardens the blood vessel walls and cause irreparable damage·
  • Follow your doctor’s instructions to the letter.

Above all, make sure you see us EVERY YEAR for your eye care as we can see small changes in the health of the blood vessels and so assist your future wellbeing and lasting vision! 

Contact us today for an appointment.

Moreleta Park : 012 998 7592

Lynnwood:  012 807 6027[/fusion_text]