SHREVEPORT, La. Tuesday, March 23, is the American Diabetes Association’s Diabetes Alert Day. With 7.2 million adults in the US unaware that they have the disease, Diabetes Alert Day encourages individuals to find out if they are at risk and how to reduce that risk.
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) launched Diabetes Alert Day as a one-day “wake up call” calling on the public to conduct a diabetes risk test to determine if there is a risk of developing diabetes. It is imperative to have an understanding of diabetes in order to identify your risks early on, before it is too late.
What is diabetes
Diabetes occurs when your body does not make or use insulin effectively. Insulin is a hormone secreted by the pancreas that prevents sugar from building up in your blood and causing high blood sugar.
There are three main types of diabetes. Type 1 is an autoimmune disease that occurs when your body doesn’t make enough insulin, while type 2 diabetes occurs when your body doesn’t use insulin properly. Obesity, age, genetics, smoking, and an inactive, sedentary lifestyle can all lead to insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.
The third type, gestational diabetes, occurs when your body doesn’t use insulin properly during pregnancy. Experts say that only 2% of people with gestational diabetes actually develop diabetes after pregnancy. However, this condition carries a higher risk of developing diabetes.
How do I know if I have diabetes?
Symptoms of diabetes include increased thirst and urination, blurred vision, tiredness, confusion, numbness and tingling in the extremities, and high blood pressure which can make you feel wobbly or dizzy.
In addition to recognizing your symptoms, it is important to do a diabetes risk assessment test. In accordance with Diabetes Alert Day, you can take the ADA’s 60-Second Diabetes Risk Test to determine your risk of developing diabetes.
Diagnosing diabetes early allows a person to receive appropriate treatment and gives them more time to make lifestyle changes. This will help them control their blood sugar and prevent long-term problems like heart disease, stroke, eye and kidney problems.
What are the complications associated with diabetes?
People with diabetes are at higher risk of heart disease, stroke, and blood vessel damage throughout the body, from the eyes to the kidneys to the feet.
Diabetes and high blood sugar cause sugar to build up in your red blood cells, causing long-term damage to the inner walls of your blood vessels. This damage leads to the formation of scar tissue, which can cause a heart attack or stroke. The short-term complications of diabetes include both low blood sugar and high blood sugar.
If you don’t know you have diabetes, you could endure years of damage without ever knowing.
What can I do?
If you have diabetes or are at risk of developing diabetes, you can start making lifestyle changes such as: B. Exercise regularly and maintain healthy eating habits.
You should also monitor your blood sugar and know what your target value should be. According to ADA standards, your target blood sugar level should be between 70 and 130 o’clock in the morning and less than 180 hours after eating.
It is important to consult your primary care doctor if you are concerned about your risks.