You cannot completely prevent diabetic retinopathy. However, vision loss can be prevented with early detection. You can help protect your sight by having your eyes checked at least once a year by an ophthalmologist or with specialised diabetic retinal photography.
You can also help slow down the development of diabetic retinopathy by keeping your blood glucose in check. The HbA1c is a measure of blood sugar level over a three-month period and it should ideally be less than 7 per cent. Control of high blood pressure is also key in preventing the development and progression of diabetic retinopathy.
Other medical conditions such as high cholesterol, kidney disease and heart disease should be treated and kept under control. Stop smoking and exercise regularly to reduce your risk of developing diabetic retinopathy.