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What Is Diabetes?
Diabetes is also known as Diabetes mellitus. When the blood glucose or sugar level is very high, a person is said to be suffering from diabetes. This indicates that , the body is unable to process blood glucose and sugar levels. Glucose is extracted by the body from the food and drinks consumed. To provide energy to the body for regular functioning, Insulin helps the glucose to enter the cells. In some cases, the body either doesn't produce insulin or doesn't use insulin properly, and this results in Type 1 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes, Prediabetes or Gestational Diabetes. There is also a Type 3 diabetes.
It is estimated that about 35% of the world population aged above 18 years suffers from diabetes. It can also lead to heart attack or stroke, if not managed properly due to the accumulation of sugar in the blood vessels. There are few conditions present in an individual since childhood that may cause diabetes.
Who is a Diabetologist?
A doctor specialised in diabetes is known as a Diabetologist. They are trained in internal medicine with fellowships in diabetology or DM in endocrinology. People with any type of diabetes prefer to seek consultation from an endocrinologist so that they can assist in further process. This will enable the patient to understand the pros and cons of the best course of treatment for them.
When To Consult A Diabetes Specialist?
Consulting a specialist is extremely important if an individual is facing complications related to eyes, kidneys, and nerves. Diabetes is known to cause slow healing of ulcers and injuries particularly on the feet. These situations worsen over period and can cause a lot of stress to the family of the patient and their daily life.
Advice from a diabetes doctor must be sought in cases of hypoglycemia, low blood sugar and diabetic ketoacidosis. Moreover, as the patient starts ageing, the complexities in diabetes increase and treatment becomes difficult. Treatment in the early days will ensure the most efficient results.
What are the symptoms of Diabetes?
Often Patient suffering from Type 2 diabetes are not aware of the disease, as it doesn't show up any symptoms in the initial stages. Once the blood sugars reach high levels, they may present with any of the following symptoms.
Huge weight loss
Numbness of hands and feet
Exhaustion or easily getting fatigued
Recurrent skin or urinary Infections
What Are The Common Causes Of Diabetes?
Causes of type 1 diabetes are usually viral, genetic and environmental factors. Type 2 diabetes is caused by obesity, inactivity, insulin resistance, family history, hormonal changes etc.
How To Control Diabetes?
Type 1 diabetes as it is caused by the immune system. Diabetes risk factors can be controlled to prevent Type 2 diabetes. It can be avoided with certain changes in the diet and lifestyle of an individual.
Common measures to prevent diabetes are:
Cardio or aerobic exercise must be done for a minimum of 150 minutes/week
Refrain from consuming saturated, trans fats and processed food.
Consume a balanced diet with more fruits and vegetables
Medical treatment with tablets or insulin depending on the need
What Do Our Endocrinologists Treat?
Endocrinologists at DocsApp treat Type1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, gestational diabetes and prediabetes. They also assist the patients to maintain a balanced diet that suits their lifestyle. Additionally, they guide them about regular blood glucose testing, injections to be taken, tips on managing high or low blood sugar.
Approximately, about 8% of diabetic patients suffer from Type 1 diabetes. It occurs due to the improper functioning of the body wherein it harms and destroys the cells producing insulin in the pancreas. Patients end up with no or very less insulin, and therefore must be provided one insulin every day. Type 1 diabetes is most common in children and teenagers, and therefore it was previously known as juvenile diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes is very common and almost 85% of diabetic patients suffer from it. It is mostly found in people above 40 years of age. At least 70% of these diabetic patients are overweight. Due to obesity, these people are diagnosed with the disease in their early 30-40‚Äôs. Insulin resistance occurs due to the improper functioning of insulin in the initial period. In later years, insulin production starts reducing and stops after that.
Diabetes that occurs during the pregnancy cycle is known as Gestational diabetes.Often, this type of diabetes disappears after delivery, but the patient has a high risk of being diagnosed with diabetes later. GDM is mostly transient but can be harmful to the health of fetus and mother. It may cause macrosomia, congenital heart and central nervous system abnormalities in the child. In rare situations, perinatal death can happen due to poor placental perfusion.
Prediabetes is also known as impaired glucose tolerance, or impaired fasting glucose. It is a state wherein blood sugar levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be called type 2 diabetes. Usually, it is diagnosed during a routine blood test or screening for type 2 diabetes. If an individual has risk factors of prediabetes, only then a specialist doctor orders a screening test.