Diabetes Treatment in Rock Springs, Wyoming
What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is the inability of the body to create or use insulin, a hormone secreted by the pancreas that enables sugar or glucose, to enter the cells. Diabetes is a serious, chronic metabolic disorder in which the body either does not produce enough insulin or does not respond to the insulin being produced. The body normally breaks down most of our food into glucose, a sugar that serves as the body’s main source of energy. In order for glucose to move into the cells of the body, it requires the help of insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas. In healthy individuals, the body usually produces enough insulin to do this, but for people with diabetes, this does not occur.
This causes glucose to build up in the blood instead of moving into the cells. Too much glucose in the blood can lead to serious health problems that may damage the blood vessels, nerves, heart, eyes and kidneys. While diabetes can lead to serious complications, it can often be successfully managed through diet, lifestyle modifications or medication.
Complications of Diabetes
Left untreated, uncontrolled blood sugar levels caused by diabetes may result in serious complications. If not treated properly, diabetes can lead to nerve damage, heart disease, stroke and kidney failure. It can also cause permanent eye, foot, skin and bone damage. A lifelong commitment is necessary to prevent these complications from occurring.
It is important for people with diabetes to take an active role in the management of their condition. Adhering to a healthy lifestyle and monitoring blood glucose levels are essential in preventing complications.
Most forms of diabetes can be managed, and with medical treatment or lifestyle modifications, people can live relatively healthy lives.
Types of Diabetes
Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is sometimes referred to as juvenile diabetes, because it is often diagnosed in children, however it can also affect adults.
Type 1 diabetes is the result of an autoimmune disease in which the body attacks the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas, disabling the body’s ability to produce insulin.
Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of preventable diabetes and is influenced by age, obesity and family history. Although the pancreas usually produces enough insulin, the body cannot use it effectively and production slowly decreases.
Prediabetes is a condition in which blood glucose levels are high but not high enough to diagnose diabetes. A diagnosis of prediabetes puts the patient at a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Prediabetes is often addressed by losing weight and incorporating a daily exercise regimen.
Gestational diabetes is characterized by high levels of blood sugar during the later stages of pregnancy. While the exact cause is not completely understood, it is suspected that the hormones produced during pregnancy prevent insulin in the mother’s body from working, resulting in insulin resistance and hyperglycemia. Gestational diabetes does not cause birth defects but it can affect the baby’s glucose levels and result in a larger birth weight.