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Diabetes awareness and care

We all are familiar with the term “Diabetes”. It mellitus commonly referred to as diabetes, is a condition in which the amount of glucose in the bloodstream is very high because the body is unable to utilize it. This happens if the body does not produce any insulin /insufficient insulin and OR insulin produced is unable to work properly (insulin resistance). Insulin is a hormone produced by pancreas facilitating the entry of glucose into the cells; glucose is then used as fuel by the cells releasing energy for carrying out day to day activities of life. If insulin is not available glucose does not enter the cells instead it builds up in the blood leading to starvation of the cells. Diabetes is of two main kinds.

Type 1 Diabetes:

Also know as insulin dependent diabetes. In this type the cells of the pancreas that produce insulin are destroyed.

Type 2 diabetes:

Also known as Insulin independent diabetes is characterized by the inability of the body to use insulin. At first the pancreas starts producing extra insulin but gradually loses its potential to produce sufficient insulin.  When the body is not producing insulin then it must be obtained from some other source. People with type 1 disease need to take insulin daily. And those with type 2 diabetes are given glucose lowering medications sometimes coupled with insulin as well.

1001px-Main_symptoms_of_diabetes

The complications associated with diabetes include blindness, lower-leg amputation, stroke, heart attack, kidney damage, and tooth loss.  The complications of diabetes can be reduced if patients control their blood glucose, blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels. It needs to be understood and appropriately communicated to patients that diabetes can only be “managed” but it has NO cure at present. The key to managing diabetes lies in balancing food intake, taking regular exercise and insulin intake and /or oral medication; these decrease the blood glucose levels. The most important thing is to educate the patients to practise self care which includes monitoring blood glucose levels, monitoring body weight, foot care, and maintaining healthy lifestyle/physical activity.

The patients should take control of their life and not let diabetes control them!!!!

 

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