Diabetes: A Whole-Body Health Concern
You might not know this, but your eyes are a window into body and health.
Because your body and eyes share an intricate, complex relationship, eye exams can help uncover several health issues and how they may be affecting your vision. One of the most common health issues in the United States is diabetes, and there are several ways this disease can affect your eye health.
The team at Alameda Optometric Group is ready to help manage your eye health and possibly preserve your vision from diabetes. Simply book your appointment by clicking the link below and get the help you deserve today.
How Diabetes Affects Your Eyes
Diabetes is often characterized by having excess levels of sugar, also known as glucose, in your bloodstream.
This issue can develop differently depending on the type of diabetes you may have, but chronic high blood sugars can eventually damage your retina’s blood vessels and increase the risk of several eye diseases and conditions.
Managing diabetes with the help of your doctor, and having annual eye exams, could help reduce the risk of developing these issues throughout your life.
Can Diabetes Cause Vision Loss?
While diabetes itself doesn’t cause vision loss, it does increase the risk of developing various eye diseases and conditions that could affect your sight over time.
Many of these issues can develop without early signs or symptoms, so it’s important to have regular eye exams to help spot these concerns before they lead to permanent vision and eye health problems. During an eye exam, we can observe various parts of your eye that diabetes may affect, including the retina, macula, and crystalline lens. Some technologies we may use include:
- Fundus photography, which gives us a highly-detailed image of your retina, macula, and optic disc.
- Optical coherence tomography, which creates cross-sectional images of your retina to help us detect potential concerns.
Our approach may change depending on your needs, but you can always expect the same care and attention when you visit Alameda Optometric Group.
Diabetic retinopathy is a common eye disease connected to diabetes.
It develops as high blood sugar affects your retina’s blood vessels, causing them to bulge, break, and leak fluid into your retina. Early diabetic retinopathy develops slowly, but it could lead to vision loss over time. If diabetic retinopathy advances, it could cause the retina to develop abnormal blood vessels to compensate for the fluid loss, but these can also break over time.
Abnormal blood vessels can increase the risk of your retina developing scar tissue, which, in turn, also increases the risk of retinal detachment and permanent vision loss.
Diabetic Macular Edema
Diabetic macular edema is an eye disease that can develop alongside diabetic retinopathy.
As high blood sugar affects the blood vessels in your retina, leaking fluids can accumulate under your macula over time, causing it to swell. Eventually, the swelling can damage your macula and lead to permanent vision problems, including central vision loss.
Open-angle glaucoma is the most common form of glaucoma, and the risk of developing it nearly doubles when you have diabetes.
Glaucoma is a group of diseases that affect your optic nerve, a part of your eye that’s responsible for sending the images your retina collects to your brain. Open-angle glaucoma can develop when your internal eye pressure (also known as intraocular pressure or IOP) reaches unstable levels. This pressure can then affect the optic nerve and lead to vision loss over time.
Cataracts are among the most common eye conditions adults can develop, and diabetes can increase the risk of developing them at a younger age.
Some researchers believe that high blood sugar levels caused by diabetes can cause glucose deposits in your crystalline lens over time. These deposits can cloud your lens and lead to visual distortions or even blindness if left untreated.
Depending on its severity, glasses and contacts could help correct visual problems caused by cataracts, but cataract surgery is the only way to restore your vision permanently.
Eye Exams See More Than You Think
Eye exams can help detect potential health issues you may not know about!
Whether or not you have diabetes, you should always consider routine eye exams as an essential part of your health care routine. Our team is ready to serve your entire family today, and all you have to do is book an appointment.
Our practice is located in a converted house on the corner of Santa Clara Ave and Union Street. Street parking is available on either side of our practice. If you have any trouble finding us, give us a call. We can’t wait to see you!
- 1801 Santa Clara Ave
- Alameda, CA 94501
- [email protected]
Hours of Operation
- Monday: 8:45 AM – 5:00 PM
- Tuesday: 8:45 AM – 5:00 PM
- Wednesday : 8:45 AM – 5:00 PM
- Thursday : 8:45 AM – 5:00 PM
- Friday : 8:45 AM – 5:00 PM
- Saturday: By Appointment
- Sunday: Closed
Closed for lunch 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
I have been a patient of the Alameda Optometrist Group for years and have been extremely pleased. Thank you Dr Shelly Sheppard and staff for all your good care. Thank you Jan for always being so patient with me on deciding what frames look better. I highly recommend your office to anyone with optometric needs.
Dr. Sheppard was very thorough in the examination and her staff was very helpful. There was three of us and they took care of all three of us with the same thoughtfulness and made sure we were comfortable. I would highly recommend Alameda optometrist to my family and friends.
Nothing but the best every time I come here thank you all so much I love my glasses.
AOG is like a good neighbour friendly type group. The facility is homey, orderly, and high covid-19 protected. One can tell the Drs. And staff are expertly trained as the service is efficient and courteous. Comfortable place.