Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Now hear this, diabetics--Get your eyes checked

The National Eye Institute says diabetic retinopathy affects 28.5% of those over 40 with diabetes. That's 7 million people and climbing to 11 million by 2030.

All people with diabetes are at risk for vision loss--but African-Americans, American Indians, Alaska natives, and Hispanics are more at risk.

The longer you have diabetes, the greater the risk of eye problems--including cataracts (clouding of the lens of the eye), retrinopathy (damage to the retina), and glaucoma (optic nerve damage).

You should have a dilated eye exam once a year--without fail. That's the exam where they put in the drops and sunlight hurts after and you have to wear some funky sunglasses.

Yet, half of all people with diabetes do not get this exam. Ninety-five percent of the damage from retinopathy can be prevented if caught early. Prevented!

You know you need to control your diet, take off weight if possible, exercise, stop smoking, and control your sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol.

Compared to that, a yearly eye exam is cake.

PS I only have one functioning eye--believe me, you will miss vision if you lose it.

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