4 Critical Reasons to Get Checked for Type 2 Diabetes Annually

4 Critical Reasons to Get Checked for Type 2 Diabetes Annually

November is National Diabetes Awareness Month and an ideal time to learn how to prevent this chronic condition that’s epidemic in our country. 

Your body breaks down most of the food you eat into sugar and releases it into your bloodstream. When your blood sugar rises, it alerts your pancreas to release the hormone insulin, which enables your body to use sugar (glucose) as energy.

When you have diabetes, your body doesn’t produce sufficient insulin or can’t use it adequately. Over time, diabetes can cause a laundry list of health problems.

Before developing type 2 diabetes, most people have prediabetes. In fact, 96 million American adults have it, but up to 80% of them don’t know it. 

Rajesh Dave, MD, at Gulf West Medical Associates in Port Richey, Florida, helps patients prevent and manage diabetes. An advocate of patient education in this blog, he breaks down the four key reasons to get checked for diabetes every year.

1. It’s in the numbers 

Many Americans are teetering between prediabetes and full-blown diabetes. Knowing where you stand is essential — it’s easy too. We check diabetes risk factors annually through an A1C blood test. This simple blood test measures your average levels of glucose over the past three months.

2. Early symptoms often go unnoticed

Type 2 diabetes develops slowly. As a result, many patients don’t initially realize anything is wrong. However, as diabetes progresses, you might experience the following:

3. Prediabetes can be reversed

Learning you have pre-diabetes may be scary, but consider it a wake up call. 

Often, you can prevent or delay prediabetes from turning into type 2 diabetes with simple, lifestyle changes. These include:

Losing as little as 5 to 10 percent of your body fat can improve your blood sugar level and help reverse prediabetes. This may be as few as 10 to 20 pounds.

If your blood sugar doesn’t improve with these measures, Dr. Dave may prescribe medication to help lower blood sugar and reverse your risk of developing diabetes. 

4. Diabetes can lead to serious health issues 

Unmanaged, diabetes can cause severe and wide-ranging health issues, including:

Prediabetes can progress to type 2 diabetes, but it doesn’t have to. Prevention is your best defense. Have your blood sugar tested annually, and make an appointment with Dr. Dave if you suspect you’re at risk. Call our office or request an appointment online today. 

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