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Diabetes: No sugar-coating the facts

Learn about risk factors and symptoms

Nearly 30 million Americans live with diabetes, a condition becoming more common place each year.* Out of that number 95% have type 2 diabetes.

In type 2 diabetes, your body does not use insulin properly. This is called insulin resistance. At first, the pancreas makes extra insulin to make up for it. But, over time your pancreas isn’t able to keep up and can’t make enough insulin to keep your blood glucose levels normal. Type 2 is treated with lifestyle changes, oral medications (pills), and insulin.

Some groups have a higher risk for developing type 2 diabetes than others. Type 2 diabetes is more common in African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, and Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders, as well as the aged population. It is also more common in people who are overweight, smoke, have high blood pressure or lack enough physical activity.

The following symptoms of diabetes are typical. However, some people with type 2 diabetes have symptoms so mild that they go unnoticed.

Common symptoms of diabetes:

  • Urinating often
  • Feeling very thirsty
  • Feeling very hungry - even though you are eating
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Blurry vision
  • Cuts/bruises that are slow to heal
  • Weight loss - even though you are eating more (type 1)
  • Tingling, pain, or numbness in the hands/feet (type 2)

Early detection and treatment of diabetes can decrease the risk of developing the complications of diabetes. There are several tests for diabetes, including The A1C test (which doesn’t require fasting or drinking anything), Fasting Plasma Glucose (which requires 8 hours of fasting) and Oral Glucose Tolerance Test (which requires drinking a special sweet drink with a test two hours before and two hours after).

If you are concerned about your risk for diabetes, consider getting tested. Monarch Primary Care can provide this testing and help you on your way to a healthier life.

*American Diabetes Association®

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