Your Future With Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is a very serious health hazard because of the other health problems it can cause. These complications include heart attack and stroke. As a result, people with type 2 diabetes have twice the risk of early death as non-diabetics. Diabetes also can lead to disability. This can be caused by blindness, amputations, heart disease, stroke and nerve damage. About 4 to 6 out of every 100 people with type 2 diabetes eventually need dialysis treatments because of kidney failure.
These facts are sobering. But they are balanced by some good news. There is a lot you can do to decrease your risk of complications. We are better equipped for this than ever before. We have an improved understanding of diabetes. Treatment also is readily available for diabetes and for conditions that often occur with it (such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol).
If you are active and assertive in managing your diabetes, you will be rewarded with a much lower risk of complications.
Diet and exercise, medicines, careful blood-sugar control and other steps can help you to live a longer, healthier life with diabetes.
Do not be discouraged if, as time goes on, you require more medicine to control your blood sugar. It is normal for diabetes to progress in this way over time. Insulin resistance increases with age. Cells in the pancreas that make insulin will require more help over time to keep up with the body's extra insulin needs. After the first few years of treatment, the majority of type 2 diabetics must take more than one medicine to control blood sugar. About 1 out of 3 people with type 2 diabetes requires insulin.
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