Diabetes is a multi-systemic disease. While the primary target of this disease involves insulin, a hormone, with disease progression, its effects can spread throughout the body, including the eyes. One serious threat diabetic patients face to their eye health is diabetic retinopathy. If you are someone who has been diagnosed with this disease, learn why and how eye health should be prioritized. 

Diabetic Retinopathy

If you have been diagnosed with this condition, you probably already know that sustained periods of elevated blood sugar levels wreak havoc on the body. In terms of eye health, these high levels directly target the blood vessels that support the retina, a key figure in the ability to see clearly. 

Over time, these blood vessels can swell and constrict to the point that blood can no longer efficiently pass through them. Without an adequate supply of blood, the retina cannot perform optimally, and as a result, vision is impacted negatively. Unfortunately, symptoms of this condition do not typically manifest until it has progressed, so being proactive is essential.


Given the essentially non-existent symptoms of this condition, one of the most important things a person can do to safeguard themselves is to prevent this condition. Step one of this process involves maintaining good blood glucose levels. Through a combination of exercise, a healthy diet, and pharmacological interventions, such as insulin or oral medication, you can help prevent prolonged spikes in your blood sugar levels that can trigger this disease. 

Secondly, it is essential to visit the eye doctor regularly. While indicators of this disease might not be evident on the surface, during routine exams, a physician can detect issues with blood flow in the eye that might indicate the onset of diabetic retinopathy.


Fortunately, there are treatment options available for this condition. Similar to prevention, for early onset cases, an effort to control blood sugar levels may correct the problem. However, for someone more advanced, medication might be an option to help minimize the swelling and, ultimately, the constriction of the blood vessels. 

Surgery might also be prescribed for more advanced cases to essentially manipulate the blood vessels that support the retina to return positive blood flow. However, no matter the treatment method, the sooner treatment begins, the greater the likelihood of success. 

Ensure you take the time to keep your eye health a top priority and visit an eye health professional for help with this goal. Reach out to a clinic like Northwest Ophthalmology to learn more.