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Protecting Vision with Eye Care for Diabetic Patients

By Gordon Wong, OD on October 14, 2017


A woman with diabetes reading a tablet with her granddaughterDiabetes impacts overall health, including the eyes, which is why eye care is so important for those with diabetes. At Gordon Wong Eye Design & Optometry, we specialize in vision care for diabetic patients so they can enjoy a lifetime of clear eyesight. To learn more about eye care for diabetic patients, we invite you to schedule a consultation with La Jolla, CA optometrists Gordon and Wildon Wong. In the meantime, discover some eye care tips for those with diabetes in this overview. 

Diabetes and Eye Complications

Chronic high blood sugar levels seen in diabetes, especially uncontrolled diabetes, can damage the blood vessels within the eyes, increasing the risk of eye health problems and vision damage. Common eye problems seen in those with diabetes include diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, and cataracts.

Eye Care Tips for Those with Diabetes

Because diabetes increases the risk of eye complications, it's important for those with diabetes to take particular care of their general and eye health. Good eye care can prevent problems from developing or catch them before they become severe. Some ways those with diabetes can help protect their vision include:

  • Keep blood sugar under control: Keeping blood sugar at healthy levels is one of the best ways for those with diabetes to protect eye and general health. By maintaining healthy blood sugar levels, it's often possible to prevent or slow damage to the eyes and preserve vision.
  • Maintain a healthy blood pressure: High blood pressure can increase the risk of eye problems. When high blood pressure is combined with diabetes, it's even more dangerous to eyesight and eye health. Those with diabetes must be diligent about maintaining healthy blood pressure levels, typically below 140/80, to protect their eyes.
  • Don't smoke: Smoking can lead to problems with the blood vessels, which can also affect the blood vessels within the eyes and cause damage to eyesight. Those who have diabetes and smoke should quit smoking as soon as possible.
  • Eat a diabetes-friendly diet: A healthy diet of fresh produce, lean proteins, and whole grains is essential for those with diabetes. Limiting sugars and foods high in carbohydrates is a good way to prevent elevated blood sugar levels. Patients should also follow all doctor guidelines and take any diabetes medications as prescribed.
  • Get regular exercise: Exercise helps the body process sugars and is a great way for those with diabetes to lower blood sugar levels. Even taking a walk as short as 15 or 20 minutes after eating can be beneficial to maintaining healthy blood sugar levels.
  • Schedule regular eye exams: Scheduling eye exams about once a year is important for those with diabetes as regular eye exams make it possible to detect any eye health problems early so that they may be treated and vision may be protected.

Learn More about Eye Care for Diabetic Patients

If you have diabetes and would like more information about caring for your eyes, we welcome you to schedule a consultation with Drs. Gordon or Wildon Wong.

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Dr. Wong and his staff have proven to be the best eye doctor that I have ever visited. He is extremely thorough and up-to-date professionally. He gives you plenty of time. I never feel rushed.

Kathrine Holladay

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