There is no doubt that diabetes is a very serious disease, and one that ensures those who have it need to be as careful as possible when it comes to their health. The key to controlling diabetes is to learn about the disease, know the basics, how to manage it, and finally to ensure that you are getting routine care. Below is a bit more information about these four important parts, and how you can implement them in your life.
- Learning about diabetes. There is frankly enough information about diabetes that you can find entire sections of libraries devoted to it, and people spend years of their lives learning all that they can about the disease. The truth is though, that there are two types of diabetes that you should be aware of, named logically enough Type 1 and Type 2. In Type 1 diabetes the body does not make its own insulin, and thus you will need to have a shot each and every day. Type 2 diabetes is where the body either doesn't produce its own insulin, or is simply unable to properly use the insulin that is made. This is the most common type of diabetes, and is usually seen in people that are overweight. There is a third type, but it is extremely uncommon when compared to the others, and it is called gestational diabetes, and only occurs in some women who are overweight and pregnant. To learn more about these forms of diabetes, you will need to consult a doctor.
- Basics. A few of the basics about diabetes is that you will have to take a regular test (called the A1C), watch your blood pressure, and keep an eye on your cholesterol. The A1C test is one that will show you what your blood glucose (sugar) level has been for the past three months. On this test (just as in golf) you will want to have a low score, one that is ideally below 7. If it is too high, you can easily end up having heart, eye, kidney, and feet problems. Get your blood pressure checked regularly, and ensure that it is 130/80 or lower, or you can end up having problems with your hearts and kidneys. With your cholesterol you will need to ensure that you have an LDL (low density lipoprotein, the "bad" cholesterol) level of below 100, and an HDL (high density lipoprotein, the "good" cholesterol) level of around 40 for men, and 50 for women.
- Managing diabetes. Controlling your diabetes properly is more of an exercise in planning and managing that is a cooperative effort between you and your doctor. That being said, there are a few things that you will need to do on your own, such as following your diabetic meal plan, getting a minimum of 30 to 60 minutes of activity every day, and staying healthy. Furthermore, you will need to know how to recognize those instances when you will need help, such as when you feel depressed or down, and lowering and coping with stress. Furthermore, it is extremely important that you stop smoking and that you also brush and floss your teeth daily. This is in addition to you yourself checking your blood glucose level at least once a day (possibly more by recommendation of your doctor). One thing that you definitely need to be aware of is your eye sight. If you notice any changes immediately tell your doctor.
- Getting routine care. The key to getting routine care lies in making sure that you see your doctor regularly. This means that, at an absolute minimum, you will need to go and visit your doctor twice a year to get the A1C test accomplished. In addition, each visit that you go to the doctor should include a check of your blood pressure, feet, weight, and your self care plan. At your annual checkup you should also get a test of your cholesterol and triglycerides, a dental exam, a foot exam, a flu shot, a check of your eyes, and a urine test to look for any problems with your kidneys.
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