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Diabetes and Glaucoma – Is There a Connection?

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Glaucoma is a disease that increases the risk of damaging the optic nerve. Typically, it is caused by high blood pressure inside your eyes. Many experts believe that diabetes is a major risk factor that may trigger glaucoma. In this short guide, we will take a look at the connection between diabetes and glaucoma. 

Types of Glaucoma  

Since glaucoma has the tendency to damage your optic nerve, having diabetes might end up worsening your vision. There are different types of glaucoma that needs to be looked out for: 

  1. Open-angle glaucoma: It is the common one among the two. In this type, the pressure in the eye builds up slowly and the vision starts to fade away gradually. 
  2. Closed-angle glaucoma: This occurs in about 10 percent of the cases and the symptoms can occur quickly. It is relatively dangerous since it poses immense danger to the patient. It also needs quick medical attention. 

A study showed that diabetes may increase the risk of open-angle glaucoma significantly. In some occasions, it may rise up to 36%! 

Can Diabetes Increase the Risk of Glaucoma?

It is important to know whether diabetes can increase the chances of glaucoma or not. Many experienced health practitioners believe that diabetes can often trigger the increase of glaucoma among patients. It is especially true for the people who have a long been associated with diabetes. 

Some of the risk factors of glaucoma include: 

  • Growing age
  • Not managing sugar levels
  • Constantly high blood pressure

Diabetes can change the glucose levels inside your body and ultimately, cause the veins around the retina to become weak and damaged. Ultimately, this leads to glaucoma. 

Symptoms of Glaucoma 

There are plenty of signs that a patient needs to look out for. Some of the notable signs include: 

  • Blind spots 
  • Tunnel vision
  • Intense eye pain
  • Blurred vision
  • Headache and eye redness
  • Nausea and vomiting 

Diagnostic and Treatment of Glaucoma 

There are no apparent symptoms of glaucoma during initial phases of the disease. However, its early development can be tracked with the help of eye inspection. The doctor may check the nerve damage in your eyes and diagnose the issue. 

After the diagnostic, the clinician may suggest a few recovery methods, such as:

  • Laser therapy 
  • Drainage tubes and stents 
  • Removing the damaged parts of eyes drainage system

How to Protect Eyes from Glaucoma in Diabetes?

If you are suffering from diabetes, it is vital to take care of your eyes and protect them from issues such as glaucoma. Here are a few protective measures you can take to protect eyes from glaucoma: 

  • Manage your blood glucose levels
  • Carefully follow the diet plan prescribed by doctor
  • Have eye exam twice a year
  • Avoid smoking and do exercise 
  • Use prescribed eye drops

Final Thoughts 

It is evident that diabetes can trigger the development of certain conditions, including glaucoma. The disease can negatively impact your vision and day-to-day life. Therefore, it is important to get your eyes checked at least once a year. 

Written by Marley Jaxx

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