Diabetes

What is it?

Diabetes, which is short for Diabetes mellitus, is a medical term that encompasses a number of metabolic diseases that cause high blood sugar levels. There are two main types of diabetes: Type 1 and Type 2. Affecting 90% of all diabetes sufferers, Type 2 diabetes is the most type of diabetes in the US.

With Type 2 diabetes, the body is unable to produce enough insulin or the cells do not react to insulin produced. Differently, Type 1 diabetes involves the body’s immune system destroying the cells in the body that produce insulin.

Gestational diabetes is a third type of diabetes which is similar to Type 2 diabetes but exclusively effects pregnant women. Gestational diabetes effects up to 10% of pregnant women, but in many cases it improves or disappears after delivery.

Symptoms

There are a number of symptoms that are associated with diabetes and include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Frequently needing to urinate, especially at night.
  • Unexplained weight loss or loss of muscle bulk.
  • Increased drowsiness.
  • Slow recovery from cuts.
  • Impaired vision.

While symptoms for Type 1 diabetes are relatively easy to spot as they develop so quickly, Type 2 diabetes symptoms are sometimes hard to spot as they develop so gradually over time. Indeed, recent health studies suggest that as many as 7 million people in the USA have Type 2 diabetes but do not know it.

Treatment

While unfortunately there is currently no cure for diabetes, successful treatment and lifestyle changes can greatly improve the long-term health of the individual. Treatment varies according to both the type of diabetes that you have been diagnosed with and the severity of the case.

  • Type 1 Diabetes Treatment

    Those suffering from Type 1 diabetes will need to take insulin to help maintain glucose levels at a safe level. Insulin treatment is given as either an injection, which needs to be administered at least twice a day, or in the form of an insulin pump.

  • Type 2 Diabetes Treatment

    The first approach for helping those with Type 2 diabetes is lifestyle change. Lifestyle changes include sticking a healthy diet and regular exercise. In addition, of your diabetes is caused by obesity, weight loss can significantly improve the condition,

    However, this is not often enough as overtime the condition gradually gets worse. Treatment in these situations usually comes in the form or tablets and/or insulin injections.