The Link Between Diabetes and Your Eyes

Diabetes can affect many different aspects of your life – even your eyes! Some common ailments can happen to your eyes due to diabetes. Without the steady of production of insulin that is characteristic of diabetes, there is not enough to break down the sugar in your blood. This results in hyperglycemia which is what can commonly affect many parts of your body as well as your eyes. Here are some common eye conditions that can come from diabetes.


One of the common eye conditions that can develop due to diabetes is cataracts. In fact, those who have diabetes are more likely to develop cataracts. Cataracts main symptom is cloudy vision, and this is due to the clear lens becoming obstructed and not allowing light to pass through it properly. This obstruction causes your eyesight to become blurry and even distorted. Cataracts are a result of additional glucose in the fluid in the front of the eye. The extra glucose causes the sorbitol levels to rise and leads to cloudy vision.


Those with diabetes are twice as likely to develop glaucoma. Neovascular glaucoma is one of the most likely conditions to emerge as a result of diabetes. Abnormal blood vessels in the retina characterize glaucoma, and they are a result of damaged central blood vessels. Common symptoms of glaucoma are vision loss or decreased vision, redness or pain.

Diabetic Macular Edema

Stemming from diabetic retinopathy, which is caused by damaged blood vessels in the retina, diabetic macular edema or DME is another common condition of the eyes resulting from diabetes. DME is also caused by damaged blood vessels but also by an accumulation of fluid in the macula. Almost 30% of those with diabetes will develop diabetic macular edema.

Eye conditions are likely to develop for those with diabetes, but there are steps that you can take to combat them. Proactively having yearly eye exams and dilated eye exams is very important to stay on top of possible symptoms. Following a proper diet and keeping your blood sugar and glucose levels under control and at the appropriate levels is crucial. A final step is ensuring that you maintain a healthy lifestyle and your doctor’s recommended diet. Be sure to watch out for any symptoms and talk to your doctor immediately if anything unusual develops.

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