Type 2 Diabetes Guide

How Does Diabetes Affect You?

Type 2 diabetes is one of the most common and serious diseases. It is a chronic condition that can put people at higher risk of developing other health problems. This type of diabetes is often preventable - but today, this condition has become much more common, even in . The increased risk of type 2 diabetes is fueled by many lifestyle factors, including . How does a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes affect you and what types of ?

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How Diabetes Can Cause Damage To Your Body

If you have , your body either doesn't produce enough insulin or it doesn't respond to insulin properly. As as result, in a diabetic have to be properly managed to avoid symptoms of (low blood sugar) or (high blood sugar).

However, diabetes is about more than just controlling your . Managing cholesterol and blood pressure are also important in the management of diabetes. If left uncontrolled and untreated, diabetes could potentially lead to life threatening complications.

Complications Brought About By Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is commonly ignored due to the fact that during its early stages, the person may not notice any at all. Even once symptoms appear it can be years before a diagnosis is made - many people are not even aware they are diabetic! Diabetes affects many of the body's major organs, such as the kidneys, eyes, blood vessels, and heart.

Kidney Damage

The kidneys filter out your body's waste products. In diabetics, high levels of blood sugar force the kidneys to try to filter large quantities of blood. Over time, the overstressed kidney can lose its filtering abilities, resulting in a build-up of waste in the blood. Eventually the kidney can fail entirely. This is an extremely serious condition that requires dialysis or a kidney transplant. Proper management of blood glucose levels and other risk factors will decrease the chance that a diabetic will develop kidney disease.

Heart Disease & Stroke Risks

There is a strong link between diabetes, and stroke. In addition to the increased risk of heart attacks or strokes, diabetics may experience additional complications due to poor circulation.

Nerve Damage

The excess sugar in your blood can damage the walls of the small blood vessels that nourish your nerves. This commonly happens in the legs and usually symptoms felt include burning, numbness, pain, and tingling sensations that usually begins at the tips of the fingers or toes and gradually spreads upward. This condition is known as . If left untreated, you could lose sensation in the affected areas.

Eye Problems

Although diabetics are at higher risk for blindness, most endure more minor problems such as blurred vision; glaucoma (a build-up of pressure inside the eye); cataracts (when the eye's lens becomes cloudy); and retinopathy (disorders of the retina). Get your eyes thoroughly checked on a regular basis - catching any eye diseases or disorders early will increase the chance for successful treatment.

Foot Problems

Diabetics are prone to many types of foot problems. These include:

  • Neuropathy (tingling or loss of feeling in your feet). This can be a problem because the nerve damage doesn't allow you to feel pain in your feet. That means, for example, you could walk on a nail all day long and not notice until an infection sets in.

  • Dry, cracked skin on your feet.

  • Poor circulation. This can mean that wounds heal much more slowly on your feet. It can also make your feet feel cold. makes circulation worse, while can help to improve circulation.

  • Calluses, which can turn into foot ulcers if left untreated, which in turn may lead to infections.

Mouth and Skin Conditions

Skin problems such as fungal infections, and bacterial infections are not uncommon. Diabetics are also at higher risk for , including . so managing your blood glucose levels is once again important.

So how does diabetes affect you? In so many more ways than simply having to control your diet and blood sugar. The side effects and complications of diabetes can be delayed or avoided entirely through careful control of your blood sugar, cholesterol, and blood pressure, as well as incorporating a healthy diet and regular exercise.



The information on this website is based on our own research and personal experience, and is not a substitute for medical advice. Questions about your health and individual situation should be directed to your doctor.