Diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of blindness among men and women with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. When detected early on, this diabetic eye disease can easily be treated by the California retina specialists at our San Diego area offices. This is just one of the many reasons that people with diabetes should maintain routine eye exams, particularly with age.

If you have diabetes and are noticing changes in your vision, please contact California Retina Associates online or by calling one of our San Diego area offices at (619) 425-7755 or (760) 352-7755 to schedule an examination with our experienced ophthalmologists.

Reduce Your Risk of Diabetic Retinopathy

Routine exams can detect early signs of diabetic retinopathy, but prevention is always preferable. While there are no surefire ways you can completely avoid this vision-stealing disorder if you have diabetes, there are steps you can take to greatly reduce your risk.

If you have diabetes, you should do the following to protect your vision from the complications of diabetic retinopathy:

  • Take all oral medications or insulin as prescribed by the doctor monitoring your general health.
  • Monitor and control your blood sugar levels. Your doctor can let you know what your target levels should be.
  • Keep blood pressure within a healthy range.
  • Keep your cholesterol levels under control.
  • Do not use tobacco or products containing nicotine like e-cigarettes. If you smoke, ask your doctor to help you quit.
  • Get regular exercise and stay active.
  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet and limit your intake of sugar, fat and salt. It may be helpful to have a registered dietician provide more detailed dietary guidelines.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Practice moderation when drinking alcohol.

Daily exercise is essential for proper management of diabetes, but extreme activities such as weight lifting and contact sports may actually increase your risks of damaging the eye – a factor that increases risks for diabetic retinopathy complications. Moderate exercise including jogging, swimming, Pilates and power yoga, when combined with a healthy diet, are among the most effective ways to keep diabetes under control.

Early Detection Is Critical

While prevention is ideal, early detection is the next best thing. Early detection increases the chances of effectively managing the disease and preventing its progression. Diabetics should visit their eye doctor every year for thorough exams and call one of our offices at the first sign of vision changes such as blurry or hazy vision, eye pain or a sudden appearance of floaters or flashes of light. These symptoms don’t always indicate diabetic retinopathy, but when they occur it’s important to have the eyes checked to determine the root of the problem.

We offer safe and effective diabetic retinopathy treatments that can help prevent blindness and preserve clear vision, but time is of the essence. Please call (619) 425-7755 or (760) 352-7755 to schedule your appointment today. Our San Diego diabetic retinopathy team maintains offices throughout the area to better serve a wide range of men and women with diabetic eye disease.