Tuesday 14 November is World Diabetes Day 2023.
This year we’re asking you to:
"Know your risk, Know your response."
Over time, diabetes can damage your eyes and even cause vision loss. Eye diseases that can affect people with diabetes include diabetic retinopathy, macular edema (which usually develops along with diabetic retinopathy), cataracts and glaucoma.
1 in 10 adults worldwide have diabetes. Over 90% have type 2 diabetes. Close to half are not yet diagnosed.
In many cases, type 2 diabetes and its complications can be delayed or prevented by adopting and maintaining healthy habits. Early diagnosis, and treatment of diabetes and complications relating to it, are essential for preventing vision loss.
Learn your risk of developing type 2 diabetes through the World Diabetes Day tool.
If you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes, you can help prevent vision loss by taking the following steps:
- Get a dilated eye exam at least once a year so your eye doctor can spot any problems early, when they’re most treatable.
- Keep your blood sugar levels in your target range as much as possible. Over time, high blood sugar not only damages blood vessels in your eyes, it can also affect the shape of your lenses and make your vision blurry.
- Keep your blood pressure and cholesterol levels in your target range, to lower your risk for eye diseases and vision loss.
- Quit smoking. Quitting lowers your risk for diabetes-related eye diseases and improves your health in many other ways too.
- Get active. Physical activity protects your eyes and helps you manage diabetes.
Diabetes-related vision loss is preventable, and the earlier problems are detected the better for your eye health.