According to Statistics Canada, 2 million Canadians over the age of 12 are affected by either type 1 or type 2 diabetes. While the common effects of high blood sugar and lower insulin production are well known, what is less well known is that diabetes can also have adverse effects to the eyes.
Diabetics are at increased risk for vision issues such as cataracts and glaucoma, and are more likely to need vision correction of some type for near- or far-sightedness (myopia and hyperopia, respectively). As well, diabetics are particularly at risk for a vision issue known as retinopathy, where fine blood vessels in the retina can become damaged and cause pressure inside the eye to build. Diabetes has also been known to cause sudden visual distortions such as loss of peripheral vision, blurry vision, double vision, sudden onset eye fatigue, flashes and floaters, and fluctuations in clarity.
Many signs of diabetic eye disease can be detected by the optometrists at Vision Care Centre, during the dilated portion of your eye exam and the retinal imaging. Treatment of diabetes is best prescribed by your family doctor, however eye health concerns in relation to diabetes can be treated with laser therapy, eye surgery, or intraocular injections as prescribed by your optometrist and ophthalmologist.