If you have been diagnosed with diabetes, or you know someone who has it, I am sure you can also agree that that management of the condition can be challenging. Especially if you are already at an old age, need special assistance, or have a very hectic schedule. In this article, we cover what is diabetes and how you can avail diabetes management in the comfort of your home.
What is diabetes?
Diabetes is a chronic disease that increases a person’s blood sugar levels. Normally, sugar is moved from the blood into the cells by a hormone called insulin. This is done so that the sugar can be stored as an energy source by the cells. In persons with diabetes, their bodies either do not make enough insulin or are not able to use insulin effectively.
There are two main types of diabetes:
- Type 1 diabetes – This is an autoimmune disease, in which the body’s immune system attacks the cells of the pancreas where insulin is produced. Due to this, the body is unable to produce insulin and causes blood sugar levels to rise. Type 1 diabetes develops quickly and until today, its exact cause is still unknown. This type of diabetes is also called insulin-dependent diabetes and comprises about 10% of all cases of diabetes.
- Type 2 diabetes – For people with type 2 diabetes, the cells of their bodies do not respond well to insulin. Although the body continues to produce insulin, it is unable to utilize it effectively for transferring sugar from the blood into the cells. Due to this, there is too much sugar left in the blood despite the presence of insulin. Eventually, the body completely stops producing insulin. Type 2 diabetes usually develops over many years, and it may not have symptoms until the body starts to have complications from the disease.
Diabetes Symptoms and Possible Complications
Type 1 and type 2 diabetes have some similar symptoms, including:
- increased hunger
- increased thirst
- frequent urination
- blurry or impaired vision
- frequently feeling tired
Other symptoms of type 1 diabetes include a sudden loss of weight and frequent mood changes. On the other hand, if you have type 2 diabetes you may notice some body sores and lesions that heal slowly.
Having diabetes increases the risk of complications, such as:
- developing heart or kidney disease
- nerve damage
- heart attack or stroke
- loss of hearing
- vision impairment or loss
- foot damage from sores and infections
- skin damage from fungal or bacterial infections
Risk Factors of Diabetes
You are at a higher risk of developing type 1 diabetes if you are a child or teenager, or if you have a parent or sibling with type 1 diabetes.
For type 2 diabetes, its risk factors include:
- being overweight
- being over 25 years of age
- giving birth to a baby weighing at least 9 lbs
- having a family member with type 2 diabetes
- having polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
Treating Diabetes and Diabetes Management
If you have been diagnosed with diabetes, it can be hard to manage chronic disease. It affects about 9% of the world’s adult population and unfortunately has no cure. Due to this, people with the condition must undergo adequate and regular treatments and diabetes management.
There are several options in getting treatment for managing the disease. The type of diabetes also matters as some treatments are effective only for one type of diabetes.
For type 1 diabetes, since the body is unable to produce the needed insulin, the main treatment consists of taking insulin every day, usually through injections. Insulin can also be taken through an insulin pump, which continuously delivers insulin to the body for the whole day.
Treatment for type 2 diabetes involves lifestyle changes, such as modifying your diet and getting regular exercise. People with type 2 diabetes are advised to eat foods that are rich in healthy carbs and are high in fibre, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Exercise is also important to control your weight. If lifestyle changes are not enough, you may also be advised by your doctor to take specific medication to reduce blood sugar levels. Some people with type 2 diabetes are also advised to take insulin.
Diabetes Management at Home
For both types of diabetes, it is important to monitor the state of the disease through proper diabetes management. These are usually done through seasonal consultations with your doctor and undergoing various tests in his/her office or clinic.
However, there are some situations where it becomes difficult for certain patients to go to a clinic or hospital. In these cases, they may prefer to undergo these diagnostic tests at home instead.
Through apps like Speedoc, it is now possible to manage diabetes in the comfort of someone’s home. With Speedoc’s app ecosystem and its network of suppliers, it can make managing your disease much easier. Speedoc offers a specialized diabetes management package that includes the following:
Every 4 months
- Fasting Lipids Test
- Fasting Blood Sugar Draw
- HbA1c Test
- Blood Draw
- Nurse or Doctor Visit
- Renal Panel
- Foot Screening
- Eye Screening
Through the Speedoc app, a nurse or doctor can visit you directly at home to monitor your health and help you deal with the disease. The doctor can also communicate with you directly through the app for consultation and to remind you about procedures. Download the Speedoc app today to know more about diabetes management and other medical services that you can avail at home.
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