How Diabetes Impacts Eyesight

If you have diabetes or pre-diabetes, it’s important to let your Champaign, IL, eye doctor know. Diabetes in all its forms can negatively impact your eyesight in ways that may not be immediately obvious to you. In particular, diabetic retinopathy is a complication of diabetes that endangers your eyesight. Here are some of the ways that diabetes affects your ability to see:

Damage to Blood Vessels

In diabetes, high levels of blood sugar weaken blood vessels throughout the body, including in the eyes. It can damage the delicate blood vessels in the retina, leading to fluid and blood leaks in the retina itself.

Formation of New Blood Vessels

When damage to the retina’s blood vessels occurs, the body’s natural response is often to form new blood vessels. These new blood vessels are typically even more delicate and weak and can bleed in the gel-like substance that is inside the eye, called the vitreous.

Swelling of the Macula

The macula is a tissue-thin part of the eye located at the back of the eye that’s responsible for central vision. Diabetes frequently causes swelling of the macular, which causes impairment of central vision. There’s also a heightened risk of blindness when this occurs.

Risk of Permanent Vision Loss

Diabetic retinopathy carries with it a higher risk of permanent loss of vision. Certain changes in the eyes are irreversible, which is another reason why it’s essential to have frequent eye exams.

If you have been diagnosed with diabetes or pre-diabetes, be sure to let your optometrist know at your next Champaign, IL, eye exam. Knowing that you have this dangerous underlying condition will help your eye doctor to be especially on the lookout for any signs of vision endangerment. Contact us today to book your next eye exam or to learn more about diabetes and vision loss.

What You Need to Know about Diabetes and Cataracts

If you have diabetes, you should talk with your optometrist in Champaign, IL, about your eyes. Diabetes can wreak havoc on your eyes, and that includes giving you diabetic cataracts. Keep reading to learn more.

What Are Diabetic Cataracts?

People who have diabetes are more likely to develop cataracts at an earlier age than those without diabetes. As you age, the lenses in your eyes become thicker and less transparent. But when you have diabetes, and you age, your high blood sugar levels can change the structure of the lens of your eyes. This is what accelerates the growth of cataracts in your eyes.

When this happens, you will notice clouding in your eyes. Therefore, it’s extremely important to schedule a cataract eye exam in Champaign, IL, immediately if you begin to notice changes in your vision.

What Type of Cataracts Are Caused by Diabetes?

The most common type of cataracts in people with diabetes is called senile type [10]. However, those with type 1 diabetes commonly have what’s called snowflake cataracts. Then, there are posterior subcapsular cataracts that are also associated with people who have diabetes. Your eye doctor in Champaign, IL, will be able to examine your eyes and tell you which type of cataracts you have.

What Is the Treatment for Diabetic Cataracts?

There are several available treatments for diabetic cataracts at the time of surgery that will help prevent your cataracts from getting worse. These include intravitreal steroids of both injections and implants. There are also macular laser therapy treatments and intravitreal anti-vascular endothelial growth factor medications as well.

Do You Need an Optometrist in Champaign, IL?

If you need an optometrist in Champaign, IL, please Contact Champaign Eye Professionals today. We have two highly skilled optometrists on staff, and we are dedicated to helping you maintain a healthy vision throughout your life.

Do Sunglasses Need to be UV-rated?

Sunglasses are much more than a fashion statement. They can help protect your eyesight, reduce the chances of developing macular degeneration, and help keep you safe from poor vision due to the sun’s glare. There are lots of sunglasses available, so the question is, do you have to buy sunglasses that are UV-rated, or will cheaper sunglasses suffice?

How UV-rated Sunglasses Protect Vision

The sun emits UV (ultraviolet rays) rays, which are harmful to the eyes. Ultraviolet rays are invisible to the naked eye, yet pose a threat to your eyesight in the form of cataracts, macular degeneration, photokeratitis, and more. UV-rated sunglasses block this light, keeping it from reaching your eyes.

How to Choose Sunglasses

Sunglasses will carry a sticker or label indicating whether they are UV-rated. Look for sunglasses that block 100% of UV rays for optimal protection. If you buy your sunglasses in Champaign, IL, at your optometrist’s office, you can be sure of getting premium lenses that will protect your eyes from damage. You can also get prescription sunglasses that offer the additional benefit of vision correction.

Note that if you are buying sunglasses elsewhere, don’t assume they’re UV-rated just because they have dark lenses. UV protection in lenses requires a special coating. Without it, dark lenses may look good, but they won’t give your eyes any more protection than if you didn’t wear sunglasses at all.

Added Benefits of UV-rated Sunglasses

Finally, there’s the added benefit of choosing UV-rated sunglasses. These special lenses will not only offer protection to your eyes; they also keep damaging UV rays from reaching the delicate skin around your eyes where wrinkles often appear.

To shop for lenses today, book an appointment or come on into your Champaign, IL optometrist office and see the wide range of options available.

3 Reasons Getting Active Is Good for Your Visual Health

One thing people are often surprised to learn during their routine eye exams in Champaign, IL, is that being physically active can play a role in your visual health. Incorporating physical activity into your routine not only benefits your overall health but also contributes to maintaining good visual health. Regular exercise supports focus, reduces the risk of certain eye conditions, and alleviates strain associated with modern screen-centric lifestyles. Take a closer look at the benefits of physical activity for your eyes below.

1. Enhanced Visual Focus

When you are exercising in some ways, you have to focus on objects ahead of you. For example, if you are running, your focus tends to be several feet in front of you. This focused activity on distant objects helps to strengthen the eye muscles, which may help with visual focus over time.

2. Reduced Risk of Certain Eye Conditions

Regular exercise may actually lower your risks of some pretty serious eye conditions and diseases. For example, aerobic exercise has been shown in clinical studies to lower intraocular pressure. Heightened pressure inside the eye has been linked to the development of glaucoma. Likewise, exercise may be beneficial for conditions like age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy.

3. Deter Eye Strain Due to Too Much Screen Time

When you are up and active, you are not focusing on a screen. Today, people spend more time on screens than ever, and this high level of screen focus can be hard on the eyes. Specifically, it can lead to asthenopia, a condition that stems from prolonged focus on a digital screen.

Work with a Champaign Eye Doctor to Protect Your Visual Health

An active lifestyle serves so many benefits for your visual health, but it is ever-important to work with a Champaign eye doctor to keep tabs on your eyes. Reach out to the team at Champaign Eye Professionals to schedule an appointment.