You Can See Clearly Now ™

How Diabetes Increases Dry Eye Risk in Children and Adolescents

How Diabetes Increases Dry Eye Risk in Children and Adolescents

 Over time, high glucose levels can affect various parts of the body, including the eyes.

Children and adolescents with diabetes, especially those with diabetes mellitus, are more likely to experience dry eye syndrome (DES) compared to their non-diabetic counterparts. Dry eye disease is a common condition that affects the quality and quantity of tears, leading to discomfort and potential vision issues.

While many people mistakenly consider DES to be harmless, untreated moderate to severe dry eye symptoms can lead to corneal abrasions, ulcers, and even permanent vision loss. It is crucial to prioritize eye health, especially in children with diabetes, to prevent complications.

Dry eyes pose a particular concern for diabetic children and adolescents, as they also have an increased risk of developing potentially sight-threatening eye conditions such as diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration, and glaucoma.

Therefore, early detection and treatment of dry eye disease are essential to maintain healthy. Diabetes is a condition characterized by elevated blood sugar levels resulting from insufficient insulin production or the body’s inadequate response to insulin. eyes and prevent further complications.

If your child is experiencing dryness, grittiness, itchiness, or irritation in their eyes, it could be a sign of dry eye syndrome. Consult with your Westpoint Optical eye doctor in Brampton West to schedule a comprehensive eye exam and receive an appropriate diagnosis and treatment.

How Does Diabetes Contribute to Dry Eye in Children and Adolescents?

Children and adolescents with diabetes, especially those with diabetes mellitus, have a higher incidence of dry eye disease due to several factors:

  1. Reduced corneal sensitivity: The cornea, the clear front part of the eye, plays a crucial role in tear production. However, high blood sugar levels can damage the corneal nerves, leading to decreased sensitivity and reduced tear production. As a result, the eyes may not recognize dryness or the presence of foreign particles, further exacerbating dry eye symptoms.
  2. Prolonged use of diabetes medications: Diabetic children often require long-term medication to manage their blood sugar levels. However, some of these medications can affect the lacrimal glands responsible for producing the watery component of tears, leading to insufficient tear production and dry eye symptoms.
  3. Impact on tear production: High blood sugar levels can cause nerve damage to the glands responsible for producing the essential components of tears. This can result in decreased tear production or poor tear quality, contributing to chronic dry eye symptoms in children with diabetes.

The good news is that diabetic children who effectively manage their blood sugar levels and receive appropriate treatment and care can reduce their risk of developing dry eye disease and other eye complications associated with diabetes.

Diagnosis and Treatment: Key Steps for Diabetic Eye Care

At Westpoint Optical, we specialize in diagnosing and treating dry eye syndrome in children and adolescents with diabetes. Regular comprehensive eye exams are crucial for monitoring eye health and detecting any signs of dry eye or other related conditions. Our experienced eye doctors will provide personalized treatment plans to alleviate dry eye symptoms and help maintain healthy eyes in diabetic children.

Air conditioners and other environmental factors can also contribute to dry eye symptoms. Taking breaks from air-conditioned environments, using a humidifier, and practising good eye hygiene can help alleviate dryness and discomfort in the eyes.

Schedule a comprehensive eye exam at Westpoint Optical in Brampton West today to ensure your child’s eyes stay healthy and their vision remains clear.