If you've recently been diagnosed with diabetes, you probably got a lecture from your primary care physician about the what this disease can do to your eyesight. While it's true that diabetes can have a devastating effect on your vision, there are also several ways that you can look out for early warning signs of a problem and take steps to prevent lifelong disabling outcomes. Diabetic retinopathy is a term that refers to several different conditions in which the blood vessels around the eye constrict and swell. This puts pressure on the nerves and tissues of the eye, causing a variety of issues. If you're suffering from diabetes, here are a few things you need to be aware of:

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Know Your Blood Sugar Levels

Your blood sugar levels will have a big effect on the behavior of your blood vessels. Keeping your sugar too high will often force blood vessels to start growing in unusual ways, leading to increased blood flow through the eye. Patients will often notice new blood vessels appearing in their eyes, sometimes followed by a red spot where a small capillary has burst. If you notice this, make an appointment with your eye doctor immediately.

Be Aware of Your Blood Pressure

High blood pressure is often a sign that your blood sugar is spiking, but it can also lead to a lot of other problems throughout your body. In your eyes, high blood pressure can cause higher pressure in your eyes as the blood vessels leak fluid into your eye. As the problem progresses, the high pressure in the eye can put pressure on the optic nerve. This will lead to severe headaches and blurry vision as the optic nerve becomes unable to process the light coming into the eye properly. Left unchecked, patients will start to report seeing dark spots in their vision. These are actually areas where the optic nerve can no longer process any visual information coming in. If you experience any of these symptoms, call your eye doctor and make an appointment as soon as possible.

Schedule an Appointment with Our Eye Doctor Diabetic Retinopathy Treatment

If you live in the Newark DE, Elkton MD, or Wilmington DE areas and you have recently been diagnosed with diabetes, make an appointment with the optometry professionals at Lavenburg Medical Group.  We want to establish a baseline of vision with you and review things that you can do to avoid future problems down the road. Call us today at (302) 993-0722 for more information or to schedule an appointment.

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