Treatment of Diabetes

Diabetes is often treated with a combination of insulin, exercise, and a special diabetic diet.

Diabetes is a type of chronic condition that affects millions of people in the world. As of 2013, there are approximately 382 million people living with diabetes. Diabetes doubles the risk of death and causes between 1.5 and 5.1 million deaths per year. It is ranked as the eighth leading cause of death worldwide. 

Chronic illnesses are types of illnesses that have no cure, but luckily at least there are treatments available that keep the illnesses in check and reduce complications. In the case of diabetes, it can be kept in check with a combination of insulin, exercise, and a special diabetic diet. There are three types of diabetes: type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes. The combination of treatments utilized will differ depending on the type of diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes (also known as juvenile diabetes) is when the body is not able to produce enough insulin to allow cells to absorb the glucose from the blood. While this type of diabetes accounts for only 10% of the total number of cases, it is also the most difficult to treat. The primary form of treatment for type 1 diabetes is the use of insulin injections or insulin pumps. This treatment introduces extra insulin into the body which allows the cells to absorb the glucose. Besides this, one must also maintain a strict diet and regularly exercise. One must also check their glucose levels multiple times a day, often before and after meals, to ensure that their blood sugar is in check.

Type 2 diabetes is the most commonly occurring diabetes, affecting 90% of all diabetic cases. One can develop this type of diabetes anytime during their lifetime. However, the benefit of this type to diabetes is that it has stages. Someone with type 2 diabetes may not show any symptoms and need not make a drastic change in their lives, whereas another might have to follow a regiment as strict as someone with type 1 diabetes.  While all diabetic patients must follow a diabetic diet and should exercise, some type 2 patients may also have to conduct regular blood glucose tests. Some many also be prescribed oral medication to help curb the diabetes. In addition, up to 40% of type 2 diabetes patients also require insulin injections.

As gestational diabetes occurs during pregnancy, it can have adverse effects on both the mother and the child. Hence, it is generally not recommended to use medicine to help control the diabetes. Most gestational diabetes patients have to utilize a strict regiment of diet, exercise and insulin therapy.

In addition to treating diabetes, one can also prevent the onset of diabetes. Having a healthy diet, living an active life, doing exercise, not smoking, and keeping your weight in check, can all help reduce the chances of developing diabetes. 

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