Everyone over the age of 12 with diabetes should have the retina of their eyes photographed each year to check for retinopathy. This forms part of the annual review.
High blood glucose
High blood glucose levels are the main cause of retinopathy, but high blood fats and high blood pressure also play a part. So, to help prevent any eye problems developing or existing problems from getting worse it is important to:
- Try to keep blood glucose, blood fats and blood pressure at your agreed target. This is agreed between you and your healthcare team
- Tell your doctor if you notice any changes to you vision (don’t wait until your next screening appointment).
- Take your medication as prescribed
- If you’re overweight, try to lose excess weight
- Eat a healthy, balanced diet
- If you smoke, ask for help to stop
- Attend your annual eye screening appointment. As retinopathy frequently has no symptoms until it is well advanced, you may not be aware of changes to the retina until your vision has been impaired. Annual retinal screening will detect retinopathy early and therefore increase the chances of minimal and more effective treatment.