Eye Care for People with Diabetes
For people with diabetes, eye care is especially important. Over time, high blood sugar can damage the tiny blood vessels in your eyes, this can lead to a condition called diabetic retinopathy. High blood sugar can also lead to cataracts and glaucoma which occur earlier and more frequently in people with diabetes.
The following tips can help you manage your diabetes and protect your eyes:
Maintain Regular Vision Exams. Schedule appointments with your eye doctor at least once a year so that any problem can be detected early and treated. During a retinal examination in Clermont, Dr. Pennachio will use special drops to widen (dilate) your pupils and check the blood vessels in your eyes for signs of damage from diabetes.
Control Your Blood Glucose. If you keep your blood sugar levels steady, you can slow the damage to the tiny blood vessels in your eyes. Several times a year you should have an HbA1c blood test. This test shows your glucose levels over the past 2 or 3 months.
Keep Your Blood Pressure Under Control. High blood pressure can lead to eye disease. If you have high blood pressure and diabetes, you need to be even more careful about how you manage your conditions.
Regularly Monitor Your Cholesterol Levels. All it takes is a blood test to find out how much bad (LDL) and good (HDL) cholesterol you have. Too much LDL is linked to blood vessel damage.
Maintain a Healthy Diet. Healthy eating helps keep your blood sugar in your target range. It is a critical part of managing your diabetes because controlling your blood sugar can prevent the complications of diabetes.
Don’t Smoke. Smoking causes problems with your blood vessels which makes you more likely to develop eye trouble. It’s not easy to quit, so don’t hesitate to ask your doctor for help. Or go to a support group or quit-smoking program.
Stay Active. Exercise can have a substantial influence on blood sugar. If you use insulin or medication to lower your blood sugar, ask your doctor what type of exercise is appropriate for you.
To learn more about diabetes eye care or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Pennachio, contact Pennachio Eye at 325-227-1999 or website.