Did you know that November is Diabetic Eye Disease Awareness Month? Diabetic eye disease is a leading cause of blindness and visual impairment, affecting over 7 million Americans. During this month, we want to raise awareness about the importance of getting regular comprehensive dilated eye exams. These exams can help detect diabetic eye disease in its early stages, when it is most treatable.
What is Diabetic Eye Disease?
Diabetic eye disease refers to a group of eye problems that can occur in people with diabetes. The three main types of diabetic eye diseases are diabetic retinopathy, cataracts, and glaucoma.
Diabetic retinopathy is the most common type of diabetic eye disease. It occurs when high blood sugar levels damage the small blood vessels in the retina, the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye. In its early stages, diabetic retinopathy may cause no symptoms or only mild vision problems. But it can eventually lead to blindness.
A cataract is a clouding of the eye’s lens. Cataracts are very common in older adults, even those without diabetes. People with diabetes are more likely to develop cataracts at a younger age than those without diabetes. Cataracts can usually be removed with surgery.
Glaucoma is an increase in pressure inside the eye that can damage the optic nerve, which transmits images from your eyes to your brain. Glaucoma usually has no symptoms in its early stages but can eventually lead to vision loss and blindness if left untreated.
Comprehensive Dilated Eye Exam
A comprehensive dilated eye exam is the best way to detect most types of diabetic eye diseases in their early stages before they cause vision loss or blindness. During this exam, your doctor will check for signs of diabetic retinopathy and other common eye problems such as cataracts and glaucoma.
The exam involves:
- Checking your eyesight
- Testing your pupils’ response to light
- Checking for changes in the appearance of your retina
- Checking for abnormal pupil dilation or changes in your visual fields
You should have a comprehensive dilated eye exam at least once a year if you have diabetes.
Schedule Your Comprehensive Dilated Eye Exam Today!
If you have diabetes, don’t wait until you’re experiencing symptoms to schedule your comprehensive dilated eye exam. Call us today to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced doctors. We provide comprehensive care for all types of diabetic eye diseases and will work with you to create a treatment plan that fits your individual needs.