Understanding The Importance Of American Diabetes Awareness Month

November 6, 2023

When we contemplate diabetes, it's common to conjure images of blood sugar, insulin, and dietary restrictions. However, this condition holds lesser-known facts that may surprise you. 

It's entirely plausible that diabetes hasn't crossed your mind lately, but now might be the time to consider a check on your blood sugar levels. As we near the festive season, where food often takes center stage over presents, AFC Urgent Care Dedham aims to shed light on diabetes as we observe American Diabetes Month.

Type 1 Diabetes and Type 2 Diabetes: Not as Alike as You Think

In Type 1 diabetes, the body fails to produce insulin, and it stems from an autoimmune response where the pancreas, the insulin-producing organ, is targeted. Most Type 1 diabetes patients must administer daily insulin injections. This type typically develops in younger individuals and isn't always preventable.

On the other hand, Type 2 diabetes is more prevalent and typically emerges later in life. While insulin is still produced by the body, its effectiveness wanes. There are varying degrees of Type 2 diabetes, and lifestyle changes, including adopting a healthier diet and incorporating exercise, can often help manage it.

Prediabetes: A Silent Killer

Surprisingly, about 96 million American adults, which accounts for over one-third of the population, grapple with prediabetes, but a significant percentage remain oblivious to this condition. This is a precarious situation, as prediabetes is a precursor to Type 2 diabetes.

The silver lining is that with lifestyle adjustments like adopting a healthier diet, staying active, and managing weight for those who are overweight, the progression to Type 2 diabetes can be delayed or even averted.

Action is essential if diagnosed with prediabetes.  making changes now, rather than later, can prevent the development of Type 2 diabetes. These changes include dietary modifications, physical activity, and weight management. If changes are adopted, there is a likelihood that the condition will remain at the prediabetes stage. However, failing to make these alterations may lead to the progression to Type 2 diabetes. Monitoring blood sugar levels is vital.

Managing Diabetes: Key Strategies

Individuals with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes often need to adapt their lifestyles to manage their condition effectively. If you have diabetes, here are practical ways to control and manage it:

  • Early diabetes testing is crucial, particularly if you experience symptoms. A prompt diagnosis allows for timely management.
  • A balanced diet that includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, fish, and low-fat dairy products can help regulate blood sugar levels, prevent complications, and enhance overall health.
  • Regular exercise is beneficial for general health, and aerobic activities such as walking or swimming can assist in managing blood sugar levels.
  • Adhering to prescribed medication is vital. While lifestyle changes can be effective, some cases may necessitate medication.
  • Adequate sleep plays a pivotal role in controlling blood sugar levels, with six to eight hours per night being the recommended amount for most adults.
  • Staying well-hydrated is essential, especially since diabetes raises the risk of dehydration.

Visit AFC Urgent Care Dedham for Blood Sugar Testing

Whether you prefer to walk in or schedule an appointment online, we've got you covered. Our facility remains open seven days a week, offering extended hours on weekdays from 8 am to 8 pm and weekend hours from 8 am to 5 pm. Additionally, we accept most insurance plans, ensuring accessibility for all. We also offer an easy to use online payment system. With just a few clicks, you’ll be checked in and checked out. 

Don't let diabetes catch you off guard or unmanaged. Early detection and proper care can make a significant difference in your health and overall quality of life. Your health is paramount, and we stand ready to support you in your health journey. Connect with AFC Urgent Care Dedham today.

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