If you have diabetes, you will probably already know that the condition can affect your eyesight.
Diabetic retinopathy is a potentially serious complication of the disease which can lead to sight loss, and which requires regular screening to keep it in check.
Routine eye test
But did you know that an optometrist may be able to spot changes in your eyes through a routine eye test that could indicate you may have diabetes, even if you have not already been diagnosed.
Jason Barlow, store director at Specsavers Haywards Heath in South Road, explains: ‘Eye tests really are about a lot more than changes to your vision, so having one at least every two years really matters.
Risk of sight loss
‘Diabetes UK estimates that up to three quarters of a million people in the UK have diabetes which has not been diagnosed as yet. That is a shocking number of people whose sight could potentially be at risk – and they do not even know it.
‘During a routine eye test, we can spot changes to the blood vessels in the eye – such as tiny leaks – which might indicate diabetes at a very early stage. Armed with this knowledge you could visit your GP for a full diagnosis, which would enable them to start treating you before you start losing your sight or suffering other avoidable symptoms.’