Diabetes is actually a metabolic disease that affects 171 million people, almost 2.8% of the world population. Diabetes is caused because a person’s body fails to produce the required level of insulin or due to cells’ failure of reaction to the produced insulin. Insulin is a hormone that takes glucose or sugar from the blood and converts it into glycogen that is later stored in the liver.
Diabetes is a chronic disease that affects many parts of the body, including eyes and vision. The increased level of glucose in the blood leads to high blood pressure and both these together can affect the tiny blood vessels in the eyes. The eye is an organ that degenerates slowly, so it is essential to find out if diabetes is hurting your eyes before it is too late. The most widespread diabetic eye problem is diabetic retinopathy.
Detecting The Problem Early
It is essential to detect diabetic eye problems early. 80% of people who suffer from diabetes for ten years or more usually have diabetic eye problems. It is the leading cause of blindness in the United States of America. Though the statistics may look very disheartening, it has been found that in 90% of the cases, early detection helps solving the diabetic eye problems to a large extent.
It is thus imperative to visit an ophthalmologist every 6 months or to make sure that any kind of degeneration is combated effectively. If you ignore or neglect the well being of your eyes, then the chances of curing it from diabetes will be all the more difficult.
Signs And Symptoms Of Diabetic Eye Problems
There are a host of signs and symptoms that one must look out for when they have diabetes. The signs and symptoms may include decreased night vision, floaters, double vision, reduced vision (partial blindness), and difficulty reading or driving a car. All these symptoms may not necessarily surface together, but it important to watch out for even one of them. Nipping the problem in the bud is the necessity here.
Stages Of Degeneration
Degeneration happens in two stages. The initial stage is when there is a collection of fluids in the blood vessel that leads to the retina swelling up. The later and more dangerous stage is when the blood vessels get blocked completely. When this happens, new blood vessels are formed which are not strong enough and they break easily. This leads to blindness. There are certain cells in the eye whose function is to differentiate color and there is another set (fewer in number) that tells black and white.
The cells that are responsible for black and white are also the ones that help night vision. Diabetic eye problems damage the cells that help night vision at a greater ratio. The optical nerve also has very delicate cells that take the message of what the eye sees to the brain. Increased glucose levels and high blood pressure damages them as well, leading to a gradual degeneration of the optic nerve. The key is to detect diabetic eye problems as soon as possible to save vision.
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