November is Diabetes Awareness Month and a good time to find out if you are at risk. With 30 million Americans diagnosed with diabetes and an additional 86 million at risk, there is a possibility that you either have it, are at risk for it, or know someone who has been diagnosed.
Risk factors for diabetes include having a family history of the disease, obesity, living a sedentary life style and having heart disease. Africn Americans, Hispanics, Asian and Native Americans are also at higher risk. Signs and symptoms include blurry vision, sudden change in weight, frequent urination, feeling thirsty all the time and fatigue. People who are at risk should start having annual assessments starting at age 45.
Diabetes is a disease that leads to elevated blood sugar. Either the body doesn’t produce enough of the hormone, insulin, that helps the cells absorb glucose (type I diabetes) or the body produces insulin and the cells don’t recognize it (type II diabetes).Type I diabetes affects children most frequently and can’t be prevented so it must be treated with medication. Type II diabetes, also known as adult onset, is not always preventable but it can sometimes be delayed or controlled by diet and exercise.
The key to successfully managing diabetes and preventing secondary complications is to control blood sugar levels. Type I diabetes is treated by taking insulin injections on a daily basis. Type II diabetes can be treated by taking medication. These medications can either be administered in tablet form or in more severe cases by taking tablets and insulin injections.
People at risk should speak to their physician about being tested for diabetes. If you would like to make an appointment with a physician at Jamaica Hospital, please call 718-206-7001.
All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.