With Type 2 diabetes, even if you do not have any symptoms of eye disease, you still need to have your eyes and vision checked regularly by an eye specialist (ophthalmologist or optometrist). If you wait until you have symptoms, it is more likely that complications and severe damage to the retina will have already developed. These may be harder to treat and may result in permanent vision loss.
If you are age 10 or older and were diagnosed 5 or more years ago with Type 1 diabetes, you should have your eyes checked even if you don’t have symptoms. If you wait until you have symptoms, it is more likely that complications and severe damage to the retina will have happened. These may be harder to treat. And the damage may be permanent.
American Diabetes Association recommends to see an eye care professional at least once a year for a dilated eye exam. Having your regular doctor look at your eyes is not enough. Nor is having your eyeglass prescription tested by an optician. Only optometrists and ophthalmologists can detect the signs of retinopathy. Only ophthalmologists can treat retinopathy.
See your eye care professional if you notice:
• Floaters in your field of vision. Floaters often appear as dark specks, globs, strings, or dots. A sudden shower of floaters may be a sign of a retinal detachment, which is a serious complication of diabetic retinopathy.
• A new visual defect, shadow, or curtain across part of your vision. This is another sign of retinal detachment.
• Eye pain or a feeling of pressure in your eye.
• New or sudden vision loss. The sudden onset of partial or complete vision loss is a symptom of many disorders that can occur within or outside the eye, including retinal detachment or bleeding within the eye. Sudden vision loss is always a medical emergency.
• your vision becomes blurry
• you have trouble reading signs or books
• you see double
• one or both of your eyes hurt
• your eyes get red and stay that way
• you feel pressure in your eye
• you see spots or floaters
• straight lines do not look straight
• You can't see things at the eye side as you used to.
All people with diabetes, especially children with diabetes need to be checked regularly by a doctor, so that eye-complications are caught on time and treated in their early stages.
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