Saturday is World Diabetes Day and in fact, the whole month of November is dedicated to awareness of the condition of Diabetes.
John Palmer, Endocrinologist at Monument Health says, “So many patients don’t realize that they have a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes and if we can get you in to get screened to get diagnosed, we can start treating you sooner.”
Sooner treatment means improved quality of life and help reduce complications. Palmer emphasizes the importance of talking to your primary care doctor and getting screened every year, especially if you have a family history.
Early diagnosis can often times be missed because the symptoms are vague like urinating more frequently, drinking more frequently, loss of weight or change in vision.
You can prevent or delay prediabetes from developing into type 2 diabetes with simple, proven lifestyle changes.
Palmer says, “And we know that there is a tremendously high chance of someone with pre-diabetes to go on to develop type 2 diabetes. We know with diet and exercise and lifestyle modifications, if we can catch you early in the pre-diabetic stage. We can significantly reduce your changes of developing type 2 diabetes in the future.”
Diabetes affects individuals young and old, of all ethnic backgrounds, and nearly equally of both genders.
Type 1 is autoimmune and often times associated with youth and type 2 is associated with lifestyle choice and genetic make up, and is typically diagnosed in adults. But the last 10 years have found there is no typical patient.
“We have kind of gotten away from the nomenclature we know that type 1 diabetes can occur anytime throughout the lifespan. And we are seeing more and more kids being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes – primary because of the obesity epidemic that is also going on nationwide,” says Palmer.
If gone undiagnosed, diabetes can lead to develop cardiovascular disease like stroke and heart attack.
Palmer also mentioned that it is important to offer support to those who have diabetes.
To take the prediabetes risk test, click here.
For more information from the American Diabetes Association, click here.