What Can be Done to Slow Diabetes Complications?

diabetes complicationsDiabetes complications are a scary reality for those who have the lifelong condition, along with their loved ones. It takes little imagination to wonder why the idea of potentially having to face amputations, transplants, and other invasive and intense medical procedures is frightening for anyone who is aware of the possibility. There are some steps that patients can take in managing their condition that will make it less likely that they will have to face the extreme potential side effects of the disease. In addition, many of the diabetic accessories required for managing skin and circulation are available at a number of diabetic supply companies, making it easy and convenient to deal with these problems when they are minor.

The basic principle involved in avoiding complications is to control the blood sugar as tightly as possible. While individuals without diabetes may be able to be a bit more fast and loose with their diet and exercise, those whose bodies don’t produce enough insulin—or whose bodies are resistant to the insulin they produce—must take a great deal of care to control their blood sugar and keep it as close as possible to the levels their doctor recommends. Findings from the Diabetes Control and Complications Trial found that aggressive and intensive control of elevated blood sugar levels in patients with both type one and type 2 diabetes decreased diabetic eye disease by 76%, kidney disease by 54%, and nerve disease by 60%. A major component of managing blood sugar is regular testing. Find a diabetic supply company that you prefer and make sure that you always have the supplies you need for testing, whether you require Accu-Chek Aviva test strips, freestyle lancets, or a the prodigy auto code glucose meter.

In addition, it is important to keep your vaccines up to date. High blood sugar can weaken your immune system, which means that illnesses that would only cause a minor disruption in a healthy individual’s life may be much more serious for a diabetic. The most important vaccines for diabetics are the annual flu vaccine and the pneumonia vaccine—as a depressed immune system can easily allow even a small flu to become a much more serious condition. Other vaccines that are important include the Hepatitis B vaccine and the tetanus vaccine; again, because of the bodily systems that these illnesses affect, they can be very serious indeed for diabetics.

It is also vital to receive yearly physicals and regular eye exams. Diabetes checkups are not meant to replace a yearly physical—nor a routine eye exam. During a physical, your physician can look for diabetes-related complications that you might not have noticed developing, such as signs of kidney damage, nerve damage, and heart disease. Your doctor may advise you to work harder on your blood pressure and cholesterol, and may recommend diabetic accessories to treat other issues before they become more serious. These products are readily available at most diabetic supply stores. Your eye care specialist can check for signs of damage to your retinas that happen often with those who have diabetes and can help to treat them.

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