Diabetic? Here's Why Eye Exams Are Critical to Keeping Your Vision Intact

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Do you have diabetes? If so, you're at increased risk for a number of different eye diseases. With November being Diabetic Eye Disease Month, our eye clinic in Calgary is highlighting some of the most common diabetic eye diseases to hammer home the importance of regular diabetic eye exams for those who suffer from the disease.

Those who have diabetes and good eyesight are usually a little perplexed when their health-care team suggests they schedule an eye exam. But it's sound advice, as people who have diabetes are at an increased risk of developing either cataracts or glaucoma. Two eye diseases that generally don't present with any symptoms in the initial stages. 

Because neither of those eye diseases typically develop with any symptoms, along with diabetic retinopathy — a potentially vision-threatening eye disease-specific to those with diabetes — regular eye exams are critically important for protecting the sight of diabetic patients.


Affordable Eye Exams in Calgary for All Ages

Specs in the City Optometry provides children, adult, and senior eye exams in SE Calgary to help safeguard your sight and overall ocular health. Our experienced optometrists use the latest in technology to quickly and accurately diagnose any eye conditions you may be suffering from, so treatment may commence right away. Contact us today to book your eye exam, and let us help you adjust your focus so you can see clearly again! 

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Why Annual Eye Exams Are Critical to Protecting the Sight of Diabetics: Diabetic Retinopathy

One of the most important things you can do as a diabetic is managing and controlling your blood sugar levels. By keeping them in the appropriate range, you'll not only protect your overall health but your eye health too.

One of the most devastating eye diseases diabetics can suffer from is called diabetic retinopathy. It occurs when there is too much sugar in the blood, causeing the blood vessels that supply the retina to become clogged or closed off. If that happens, your eye will try to grow new blood vessels to solve the problem. Unfortunately, these new blood vessels don't form as they should, and can have a tendency to leak. 

If these newly formed blood vessels leak, they can lead to: 

  • A retinal detachment 
  • A vitreous hemorrhage 
  • Glaucoma 
  • Blindness

Even if your eyesight is 100 percent perfect, if you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, you're at risk of developing diabetic retinopathy. Those with type 1 diabetes are more likely to develop diabetic retinopathy, but anyone with diabetes is susceptible to it.

This eye disease generally develops with little to no symptoms at the start, making regular eye exams the best and first line of defence in catching it early. If caught early, your optometrist can employ various treatments to help manage the disease and save your vision.

Diabetic Eye Exams at Specs in the City

The Two Other Main Diabetic Eye Diseases

Much like diabetic retinopathy, the following two eye diseases that diabetics are more likely to develop generally don't come with any forewarning. As alluded to earlier, these eye diseases are:

Cataract: A progressive clouding of the eye's lens, which causes it to become opaque and difficult to see through. Cataracts may be surgically removed or successfully managed if caught in time.

Glaucoma: A series of eye diseases that mainly have to do with the intraocular pressure within your eye. If the pressure within your eye becomes too high due to blockage or poor regulation, the blood supply to your optic nerve can become restricted and its nerve cells can be killed. If left untreated, glaucoma can progress to the point where blindness is caused.

Due to the fact the three diabetic eye diseases outlined above typically start with no symptoms and can be effectively managed or treated when caught early on in their development, those with diabetes would do best to see their eye doctor at least once a year to ensure their ocular health and vision remain intact for many years to come.

Contact Us Today

If you have diabetes and would like to know more about our diabetic eye exams in SE Calgary, please feel free to get in touch with our optometrists at Specs in the City. Simply give us a call at 403-252-2020 or fill out our online contact form to book your appointment today. 

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