We know that the blood that courses through our veins carries some nutrients to the various cells and systems that keep us functioning at optimal levels. And yet, it’s such a common idea that it’s easy to forget. Here, we want to discuss the connection between blood – specifically, blood sugar – and eye health.
Blood sugar that is difficult to manage is referred to as diabetes. This condition involves the metabolic system, which is responsible for producing and using insulin to regulate the amount of sugar that is present in the blood at any given moment. Every cell needs sugar, but too much of this substance can create serious and lasting problems. Eye health is a pressing concern for people with diabetes, but managing this aspect of wellness can seem overwhelming.
A symptom that should be given attention is one of the simplest and seemingly benign: blurriness. Blurred vision could be an early warning sign that vision is threatened by:
- Proliferative retinopathy. The eye is filled with blood vessels and other vital structures. Proliferative retinopathy describes the disruption of retinal health via the presence of blood and fluid on this surface. Individuals with this condition may also notice floaters in central vision.
- Macular edema. This is a type of retinopathy for which diabetics are at a particularly high risk. The term edema describes swelling. This swelling in the macula, a vital structure to central vision, may occur due to fluid leakage and may cause blurred or wavy vision.
- This eye disease is a potentially serious condition that could lead to vision loss over time, so needs to be diagnosed and treated properly. This condition adversely affects the optic nerve, which is responsible for transmitting light to the brain for interpretation. Chronic, excessive pressure on the optic nerve could cause irreparable damage.
- More than blurred vision, cataracts cause more of a clouding across the eye. This clouding originates with the accumulation of proteins on the eye’s lens. One or both eyes may develop cataracts, and the spread of proteins on the lens can ultimately inhibit the performance of normal activities.
Routine eye exams are important for people of all ages and particularly vital to individuals with known health conditions such as diabetes. We are happy to provide you with comprehensive eye care that supports your health and wellness.