Diabetes is a serious condition that affects 30.3 million people in America. November is Diabetes Awareness Month and we want to give you our guide to understanding and treating diabetes to help you or your loved ones stay healthy.
What is Diabetes?
Type 1 diabetes, previously known as juvenile diabetes, is a chronic autoimmune condition where the body is unable to create insulin because its own immune system attacks insulin-producing beta cells from the pancreas. Insulin is a hormone that regulates blood sugar to prevent the sugar that remains in the blood from causing serious damage to organ systems. People with Type 1 diabetes rely on daily insulin injections in order to carefully regulate their blood sugar to stay alive, and are dependent on insulin for the rest of their life.
Type 1 diabetes is not:
- A lifestyle
- A disease
- Something you outgrow
- Caused by sugar
Type 2 diabetes is when the body can’t properly use insulin. This means that although the pancreas initially creates the needed insulin, eventually it can’t keep up to manage blood sugar levels. Type 2 diabetes is usually diagnosed later in life, is preventable, and is manageable. Of the 415 million global diabetes cases, it’s estimated that 90% are a Type 2 diagnosis.
How Does Diabetes Affect Seniors?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 25% of the 30.3 million Americans who have diabetes are 65 and older. People with Type 2 diabetes have a higher risk than those with Type 1 diabetes of developing serious health complications including kidney failure, adult-onset blindness, hypertension, and an increased risk of stroke or heart attack.
Studies have shown that seniors have difficulty diligently following diabetes treatment plans if they don’t have the correct accountability. At Park Street Senior Living, we ensure that our dedicated staff is aware of all our residents’ health concerns and treatment plans to be able to provide your loved ones with the help and accountability they need to enjoy life and stay healthy.
Prevention & Treatment
Being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes can be daunting, but don’t be discouraged! There are ways to manage the condition so that you can continue living a happy and healthy life. Regular exercise, eating nutritious meals, maintaining a healthy weight, and checking your blood sugar regularly are all simple ways to care for your condition. These are also very effective methods to prevent a Type 2 diabetes diagnosis. If lifestyle changes aren’t effective, ask your doctor about oral medication or insulin therapy.
There are so many ways you can get involved with Diabetes Awareness month — from inspiring and educating others to learning about your health history and giving back.
Schedule your private tour today by reaching out to our compassionate team through our Contact Us page. We look forward to meeting you and showing our award-winning assisted living and memory care community.