Home Diseases Guide Diabetes and eyes: What you need to know?

Diabetes and eyes: What you need to know?

Diabetes is a chronic condition that determines high blood sugar levels in body. It is categorized into Type 1 and Type 2. Type 1 is insulin dependent and Type 2 is non insulin dependent. High blood sugar level causes many visionary and eye problems. This disease in people of age group of 20–74 even leads to blindness. Even some temporary eye problem such as blurred vision is aggravated due to diabetes. Even the lens of the eye swells affecting the ability to see. To get the normal vision, you need to have controlled blood sugar level for three months continuously. The major eye problems that people suffer due to diabetes are retinopathy, cataracts and glaucoma. Read on to know how diabetes can affect your eyes.

Watch for warning signs.

Diabetic retinopathy:

Diabetic retinopathy

Condition: Diabetic retinopathy is caused when blood vessels are damaged in the retina, which is a lining of tissue at the back of an eye. Almost every third person in the world develops this eye problem. It is seen that in maximum cases a condition called non-proliferative retinopathy is developed. It doesn’t affect the ability to see in any way. It even causes macula edema. It is a condition that happens when fluid enters into a part of retina, which mainly functions to provide sharpness for reading. Retinopathy can be of three types namely background retinopathy, maculopathy and proliferative retinopathy.

Symptom and test: It is best recommended that every person who is affected by diabetes must go through eye checkup once in a year at least. If diagnosed early, then the treatment can surely decrease the diabetic retinopathy from leading to vision loss. People who are at a low risk can follow the treatment and avoid such problems.


Manage your blood pressure.

If there is a case where bleeding has already occurred, then diabetic retinopathy gets worse. In such case, you need to follow a treatment called vitrectomy. In this treatment you need to remove the blood from middle of an eye. There may be a treatment that needs to repair a damaged macula or a detached retina. Macula edema is also treated with the help of surgery. The surgery helps to slow down the leakage around macula. If the blood sugar level, blood pressure and cholesterol are controlled properly, then diabetic retinopathy can be avoided perfectly. But it has been seen that laser therapy burns delicate vessels, sometimes leading to blindness.

Diabetes and cataracts:

Diabetes and cataracts

Condition: Diabetes can lead to cataract problem, especially for people at a very young age. It is the condition when cataract clouds around the eye lens and that leads to a cloudy vision. But at the same time it very common that anyone can have cataract and the condition may progress quite rapidly even in people without suffering from diabetes. If you have cataract, then you probably can’t even focus light and there is an impairment of vision.

Symptoms and test: Cataract problem can be diagnosed by regular eye checkups. It is not only recommended for people suffering from diabetes but all the others too. Anyone having symptoms such a glared or blurred vision must go for check up.


Take heart diabetes care and eye care work together.

The treatment of cataract in most cases is surgery. Surgery is followed by implantation of lens, either with contact lenses or glasses for improved vision. If the cataract problem is mild, then whenever possible use sun glasses or glare control glasses.

Diabetes and glaucoma:

Diabetes and glaucoma

Condition: The eye problem called glaucoma develops when the fluid in the interior part of the eye doesn’t drain properly with the help of the pressure build up in the eye. Sometimes the pressure even damages the blood vessels of eye and nerves that leads to impairment of vision. It even damages the optic nerve which is the main nerve in the eye that allows one to see. But diabetes even increases the chances of glaucoma to occur.

Symptoms and tests: It is observed that in most of the cases there are no symptoms for glaucoma. This eye problem can be observed until it has reached an advanced stage and the person has a significant vision loss. Initially there may be eye pain or aches, headache, watering eyes, blurred vision and even one can see halos or colored rings around the lights.


Quit smoking.Treatment of glaucoma, caused due to diabetes can be done through surgery. It can also be done with eye drops that decrease the pressure in one’s eyes, medicines and even some laser procedures. There is an annual glaucoma screening also carried out by doctor. This treatment is recommended for people suffering from diabetes. Early detection can reduce some risk factors.