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Why Controlling Your Blood Glucose Levels Is So Important To Your Vision Health

People with diabetes need to take extra steps to safeguard their health because they’re at an increased risk of a wide array of medical problems. Your diabetes care team should include an ophthalmologist. Meet with your ophthalmologist to determine how often you should have your eyes examined and to discuss the short-term and long-term effects of poorly controlled blood sugar levels when it comes to your eye health.

Attractive blue eyes looking up

Short-Term Effects of High Blood Sugar

Ideally, your blood sugar levels should be in the 70 to 130 mg/dL range prior to eating and below 180 mg/dL a couple of hours after eating. If your blood sugar levels are too high, the lenses of your eyes are subject to swelling. This causes blurry vision, which may interfere with your ability to perform day-to-day tasks. If you do develop blurry vision, check your blood sugar immediately and see an ophthalmologist as soon as possible. By taking steps to control your blood sugar, you can bring your vision back to normal. However, it can sometimes take up to three months for your vision to stabilize.

Long-Term Effects of High Blood Sugar

If your blood sugar levels are poorly controlled for a long time, you run the risk of serious health complications, including permanent eye damage. High blood glucose damages your body’s blood vessels. Diabetic retinopathy occurs when the blood vessels of the retina sustain damage. The symptoms develop gradually; if left unmanaged, diabetic retinopathy can cause irreversible vision loss. Individuals with diabetes are also at a higher risk of glaucoma because the intraocular fluid within the eye cannot drain correctly, causing a buildup of pressure. Additionally, you’re at a higher risk of developing cataracts when you have poorly controlled blood sugar levels.

Although prevention is always ideal, if you do develop vision complications from diabetes, Dr. Mark Hornfeld can help. Dr. Hornfeld offers state-of-the-art cataract surgery and management services for glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy. Call our NYC ophthalmology practice today at (646) 502-4142 to schedule your visit.