Diabetes is a chronic health condition that affects how your body turns food into energy. Most of the food you eat is broken down into sugar (also called glucose) and released into your bloodstream. When your blood sugar goes up, it signals your pancreas to release insulin. Insulin acts like a key to let the blood sugar into your body’s cells for use as energy. If you have diabetes, your body either doesn’t make enough insulin or can’t use the insulin it makes as well as it should.
Diabetes is common
37.3 million Americans—or about 11.3% of the U.S. population—have diabetes.
About 1 in 5 Americans living with diabetes, or 8.5 million people, are unaware that they have the disease.
Approximately 96 million people ages 18 or older have prediabetes, a condition in which blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes.
More than 8 in 10 adults living with prediabetes don’t know they have it
Health problems that can develop
Over time, high blood glucose leads to problems such as
Type 1 diabetes occurs at every age and in people of every race, shape, and size.
Type 1 diabetes, once known as juvenile diabetes or insulin-dependent diabetes, is a chronic condition in which the pancreas produces little or no insulin. Insulin is a hormone needed to allow sugar (glucose) to enter cells to produce energy.
Different factors, including genetics and some viruses, may contribute to type 1 diabetes. Although type 1 diabetes usually appears during childhood or adolescence, it can develop in adults.
Despite active research, type 1 diabetes has no cure but it can be managed. By living a healthy lifestyle filled with exercise and proper diet, you can live a normal life and do everything you set out to do.
Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes. It is an impairment in the way the body regulates and uses sugar (glucose) as a fuel. This long-term (chronic) condition results in too much sugar circulating in the bloodstream. Type 2 is more common in older adults, but the increase in the number of children with obesity has led to more cases of type 2 diabetes in younger people.
While some people can control their blood sugar levels with healthy eating and exercise, others may need medication or insulin to help manage it.
Gestational diabetes can be a scary diagnosis, but like other forms of diabetes, it’s one that you can manage. It doesn’t mean that you had diabetes before you conceived or that you will have diabetes after you give birth. It means that, by working with your doctor, you can have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby.
The key to treating it is to act quickly—as treatable as it is, gestational diabetes can hurt you and your baby. Work with your doctor to keep your blood sugar levels normal, through special meal plans and regular physical activity. Your treatment may also include daily blood sugar testing and insulin injections.
Understanding the types
When it comes to prediabetes, there are no clear symptoms—so you may have it and not know it. Before people develop type 2 diabetes, they almost always have prediabetes—blood sugar levels that are higher than normal but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes. You may have some of the symptoms of diabetes or even some of the complications.
If you discover that you do have prediabetes, remember that it doesn’t mean you’ll develop type 2, particularly if you follow a treatment plan and a diet and exercise routine. Even small changes can have a huge impact on managing diabetes or preventing it all together.
For some people with prediabetes, early treatment as well as moderate lifestyle changes can actually return blood sugar levels to a normal range, effectively preventing or delaying type 2 diabetes.
Take the prediabetes risk test below and schedule an appointment with your provider if you're concerned you may be at risk.
The good news?
Our staff can help diagnose and treat this chronic condition. Once diagnosed and treated, it’s entirely possible to live a normal, healthy life. Call one of our clinics today to schedule an appointment with one of our providers .
Tensas - (318) 766.1967
Vidalia - (318) 414.3020
Diabetic Foot Care
Did you know nearly 50% of diabetic patients will have diabetic peripheral neuropathy in their lifetime?
This type of nerve damage can lead to serious complications and many of our patients are unaware that they have loss of feeling or numbness. Regular evaluations are veryimportant to catch this condition early. Our trained and caring staff will provide the best care for your feet and give you the tools you need for better home foot care.
Our diabetic foot care services include:
• Vascular Evaluations
• Nail Trimming
• Callus and Corn Care
• Ulcer and Wound Care
• Circulatory Testing
• Diabetic Shoe Prescriptions
• Fungal Treatment
• Ingrown Nail Care
Call our clinic today to schedule your appointment.