Information released by Diabetes Cure Web states that diabetics are almost twice as likely to experience eye problems than those who do not have the disease.  Decades of research shows that glaucoma and diabetes are associated with each other. Diabetes glaucoma occurs when fluid pressure inside the eye increases, causing the optic nerve to become damaged. As a result, the loss of vision can take place.

According to the American Health Assistance Foundation’s National Glaucoma Research Program, glaucoma is one of the leading causes of irreversible blindness in the world. In America, 2.8 million people have been diagnosed with open-angle glaucoma. Because glaucoma often does not show symptoms until its later stages, the same number of people are estimated to be living with the disease without knowing it. In fact, 50 percent of people who have diabetes glaucoma are unaware that they have it.

Regarding adults between the ages of 18 and 44, one out of ever 200 individuals will be affected by glaucoma at some point during their lives. Those numbers increase drastically for people between the ages of 55 and 64, with one in every 50 persons living with the disease. Those numbers drastically spike again in the 65 to 74 age group, jumping to one in 16. For individuals aged 75 and up, one in 10 people are affected by glaucoma. In the United States, glaucoma is cited for 11 percent of all blindness cases, and people who have diabetes are at an increased risk of experiencing glaucoma.


How to Prevent and Control Glaucoma and Diabetes


Glaucoma and diabetes can be life-altering, so a person who knows they have diabetes should take the appropriate steps to prevent the onset of glaucoma. For those already living with diabetes and glaucoma, there are ways to keep it under control and keep or delay it from advancing to more serious stages. Like other eye complications associated with the disease, glaucoma and diabetes becomes an issue when high blood sugar levels exist over an extended period of time. Monitoring blood glucose levels and taking steps to keep them in a healthy range through medication, diet and exercise is the most important way to prevent and control glaucoma. Reducing blood pressure and cholesterol levels is also a key factor. The development of glaucoma diabetes may also be slowed or stopped when a person discontinues smoking tobacco products.  An essential step for preventing diabetes glaucoma is to have eyes screened annually by an eye doctor.

For a person who already has glaucoma and diabetes, they may experience loss of vision, head and eye aches, halos around lights, blurry vision or watery eyes. Treatments are available for glaucoma diabetes. A doctor can prescribe special eye drops. Laser therapy is another treatment option, as well as medication and surgery.