The Eye Health Risks of Diabetes
Diabetes affects millions of Americans, increasing their risks of developing eye diseases that could cause vision loss. Regular eye exams are important for everyone, but if you live with diabetes, you’ll want to be extra proactive about seeing your optometrist.
Some diabetic eye diseases progress without obvious symptoms, so don’t assume you’ll recognize the signs without help. Instead, let our optometrists provide you with preventive care tailored to your specific needs and risks.
Common Diabetic Eye Diseases
Diabetic Retinopathy & Diabetic Macular Edema
High blood sugar from diabetes can damage the blood vessels in your retina, causing diabetic retinopathy. Damage to these blood vessels can cause fluid to leak into your eyes and may also result in scar tissue that causes severe vision loss.
Advanced diabetic retinopathy can also damage the part of your retina called the macula, leading to diabetic macular edema. Since the macula controls your central vision, diabetic macular edema can make it difficult to read, drive, and perform many other everyday tasks.
Glaucoma is a type of eye disease that causes optic nerve damage. Many forms of glaucoma come on slowly with no obvious symptoms until they’ve become a threat to your vision. However, glaucoma can also be acute—in which case, it should be considered a medical emergency.
Any type of glaucoma can lead to blindness without medical intervention. Since diabetes doubles your risk for this disease, we test for glaucoma during all diabetic eye exams and create custom plans for managing it.
Cataracts cloud the lens of your eye when groups of proteins form inside it. As cataracts progress, your vision may seem to “fog up” until you can’t see clearly anymore. Most people get cataracts when they’re older, but your risk of getting them younger increases if you have diabetes.
Unlike most other diabetic eye diseases, vision lost to cataracts can often be recovered with cataract surgery. An ophthalmologist generally performs the surgery by removing the cloudy lens and replacing it with an artificial lens.
When Should People with Diabetes Have Eye Exams?
If you have diabetes, you should have a comprehensive eye exam every year. The earlier we can discover an eye disease, the more we can usually do to treat it. Eye exams can also alert us to the presence of undiagnosed diabetes.
Let us help protect you from diabetic eye problems and their most severe effects. Please book your next eye exam with us today.
Our Location in Los Gatos
Where Is Your Practice?
Our practice is on North Santa Cruz Avenue, at the corner of Bachman Avenue. If you’re early for your appointment, you’ll find eateries and plenty of other shops nearby to explore.
- 233 N Santa Cruz Avenue
- Los Gatos, CA 95030
- Monday: Closed
- Tuesday: 9:00 AM – 5:30 PM
- Wednesday: 9:00 AM – 5:30 PM
- Thursday: 9:00 AM – 5:30 PM
- Friday: 9:00 AM – 5:30 PM
- Saturday: 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
- Sunday: Closed
Our Eye Care Services
Adult & Senior Eye Exams
Regular eye exams let your eye doctor detect early signs of eye diseases and vision problems. Learn more about how eye exams help preserve your ocular health and vision.
Children’s Eye Exams
As children grow, their eyes require special attention to promote healthy development. Learn when to take your children for eye exams and how the process works.
Contact Lens Exams, Fittings, & Brands
Contact lenses may help you see clearly without needing to wear glasses. Find out how our contact lens exams can match you with comfortable, effective products.