Diabetes in Adult
Diabetes, also known as diabetes mellitus (DM, Majorly Type 2 Diabetes in adult), is a metabolic disorder in which there is a high blood sugar level. In India, diabetes affects more than 62 million people, which is more than 7.1% of the adult population. Every year almost 1 million Indians die due to diabetes.
People who are obese, have a family history of diabetes, or lead a sedentary lifestyle with lack of exercise are more prone to have type 2 diabetes.
Signs and Symptoms
The symptoms of type 2 diabetes may appear slowly. Some people may not notice the symptoms until it aggravates. The warning signs and symptoms of diabetes include:
- Increased thirst
- Increased hunger
- Increased frequency of urination
- Dry mouth
- Unexplained weight loss
- Blurred vision
- Loss of consciousness (Diabetic coma)
How to find out whether I have diabetes?
Few blood and urine tests that help to check for high glucose levels include:
- HbA1c blood test: HbA1c or glycated hemoglobin develops when hemoglobin combines with glucose in blood. Levels of HbA1c gives an estimate of the average blood sugar over a week or month. In this test a reading between 5.7% and 6.4 % suggests that the patient has a higher chance of diabetes. A reading of 6.5 % indicates that the patient is diabetic. If the reading is more than 6.5 %, it indicates that the patient has poor control over blood sugar level.
- A fasting plasma glucose test helps to detect diabetes or pre-diabetes. In this test, blood glucose is measured after the patient had been fasting for 8 hours and had only plain water during this phase.
- Post prandial glucose test involves assessing the blood sugar levels after you have had your meal. This test helps in assessing how tolerant your body is to glucose.
- An oral glucose tolerance test helps to measure diabetes or pre-diabetes. It measures the blood sugar after the patient eats nothing for 8 hours and then 2 hours after the patient drinks a glucose containing beverage.
- A random plasma glucose test after the assessment of the symptoms helps to diagnose diabetes but not pre-diabetes. This test is done irrespective of the time when the patient had the last meal.
A positive result of this test should be confirmed by doing a fasting plasma glucose test or the oral glucose tolerance test on another day.
How to prevent the complications related to diabetes?
Complications related to diabetes can be deadly but if diagnosed early, the complications can be prevented. There are various tests that help to prevent and complications related to diabetes. They are:
1. Tests for eye problems (retinopathy):
A person with diabetes, who is more than 12 years of age, should undergo a retinal examination yearly. During the screening of your retina, a photograph of the retina will be taken to examine how healthy it is.
2.Tests for peripheral nerve damage and circulation:
People with diabetes should have a thorough foot examination every year. Sensations such as heat and cold, touch and also the circulation in the feet will be examined to ensure there is no nerve damage or circulatory inefficiency caused due to diabetes.
3.Tests for cholesterol:
People with diabetes should undergo blood test every year to examine the cholesterol levels. This will help to prevent any cardiovascular problems in future.
4.Screening for blood pressure:
Diabetics are prone to develop high blood pressure. People with diabetes should measure the blood pressure levels in order to prevent any further complications.
5.Screening for kidney diseases (nephropathy):
People with diabetes are more prone to develop kidney problems. Therefore, it is very essential for all the diabetes patients to kidney function test. In this test, a sample of the patient’s urine will be collected and examined for protein in the urine.
The major goal in diabetes management is to control the blood glucose levels within the normal range and prevent the complications related to diabetes.
- Type 1 diabetes can be treated with anti-diabetic medications, regular exercise and proper balanced diet.
- Type 2 diabetes can be treated with a proper diet, weight management, exercises and life style modifications like avoiding alcohol, smoking etc. Oral medications are also prescribed for treating type 2 diabetes. If oral medications are not effective then insulin injection is suggested.
- Diabetes Diet – Adherence to a strict diabetic diet plan is very essential to control diabetes. Factors like the amount of carbohydrates, fats, protein and fiber required for maintaining healthy glucose levels should be considered while preparing a diet plan. The timing of the meals should coincide with insulin administration as suggested by the physician.
- Weight management and exercise – Weight management and exercise are the important aspects of diabetes management. Weight reduction and exercise increases body’s sensitivity to insulin which helps to control elevated blood sugar levels.
- Surgical treatment – Transplantation of pancreas would the last measure that can be opted to treat diabetes when other hypoglycemic therapy fails.
At home measures:
The following measures should be adopted to prevent complications of diabetes:
- Take care of your feet. Check for any blisters, cuts, sores, swelling or redness. Consult the doctor if the cut or sore does not heal.
- Be aware about the symptoms of hypoglycemia like sweating, shakiness, hunger, dizziness or light headedness, irregular or rapid heartbeat, fatigue, blurred vision, irritability, and headaches etc. If any of these symptoms arises, seek for medical attention.
- Exercise and physical activity should be an essential part of the daily routine.
- Monitor the blood sugar levels frequently.
- Take small frequent meals throughout the day.
- Avoid drinking alcohol and smoking.
Why choose Apollo Diagnostics?
We have the expertise of 34 + years in healthcare. Our labs are equipped with EQUAS (External Quality Assurance System) and loaded with full automated machines to ensure error free reports, with a quick turnaround time, and at an affordable price. For your convenience, we offer free home collection of samples.
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