If you have diabetes, it is important to stay on top of your treatment plan so you can manage your condition. These four steps are recommended by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases to help you deal with your disease.
Step 1) Learn About Diabetes
Diabetes is the condition which occurs when your blood sugar is too high. There are two basic types of diabetes, and a third which affects women in pregnancy.
• Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes usually begins in young people when the immune system destroys the cells in the pancreas that make insulin. When the body does not produce insulin, sugar accumulates in the blood where it causes damage to other systems in your body. People with type 1 diabetes must take insulin every day to stay alive.
• Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes typically begins later in life, although it can start at any time. This condition develops when the pancreas is no longer able to produce enough insulin to keep up with the body’s needs, leading to high blood sugar. People who are overweight or who are not active are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes.
• Gestational Diabetes
Women who are pregnant may also develop a condition known as gestational diabetes. Factors such as weight gain during pregnancy make it harder for their bodies to use insulin late in pregnancy. If the body cannot produce enough extra insulin to keep up with the need, gestational diabetes may occur.
For most women, gestational diabetes goes away after the pregnancy is complete. But women who have gestational diabetes are at higher risk to develop type 2 diabetes later in life.
Step 2) Know Your Numbers
There are three key numbers you need to keep track of when you have diabetes, in addition to your daily blood sugar levels:
This blood test gives you the average of your blood sugar for the last three months. You need to track this number in addition to your daily sugar levels in order to understand how well you are managing your sugar over time.
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. Types of Diabetes. Web. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. Managing Diabetes. Web. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
Diabetes management: How lifestyle, daily routine affect blood sugar. Web. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
About Cholesterol. American Heart Association. Web. Retrieved November 2, 2016.