Diabetes usually referred to as type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM) or just “diabetes,” is a chronic metabolic illness that is becoming more common everywhere in the globe. With the number of affected individuals anticipated to double in the next ten years due to an ageing population, it is quickly turning into an epidemic in several nations, adding to the stress already placed on healthcare providers. This is primarily prevalent in developing countries like Nigeria.
All of the food we eat is converted to glucose, which the blood then carries to the various regions of the body to supply energy for everyday operations. The pancreas produces the hormone known as insulin, which aids in the transport of glucose.
Diabetes results in excessively high blood glucose levels for an extended length of time because the pancreas either produces insufficient insulin or the pancreatic cells do not react to insulin. This may have serious immediate and long-term effects, such as heart disease, brain damage, amputations, and brain damage.
Of the several types of diabetes, Type 2 accounts for nearly 90% of occurrences, making it the most prevalent. The prevalence of type 2 diabetes varies significantly within and between nations and is rising globally. Type 2 diabetes mostly affects adults, frequently elderly adults, however, it can also affect children and adolescents.
- Ageing age- It mostly affects adults, though adolescents are starting to show signs of it as well.
- Family members that have diabetes
- Having a body mass index (BMI) of more than 25 kg/m2
- Bad dietary practices
- Insufficient physical exercise
- Blood Pressure is High
- Hyperlipidemia, or excessive levels of the potentially dangerous blood fats triglycerides and/or cholesterol
- Alcohol abuse, drug usage, and tobacco use.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
- A lot of urinating
- Increased appetite
- Uncontrollable thirst
- Unaccounted-for weight loss
- A lack of motivation and excessive exhaustion
- A lack of interest and focus
- Distorted vision
- Recurrent or serious infections, such vaginal infections
- Delayed wound healing; dry or irritated skin
- Male impotence
Blood tests are typically used to diagnose it;
- Fasting plasma glucose > 7.0 mmol/l (126mg/dl)
- Plasma glucose > 11.1mmol/l (200mg/dl) 2 hours after a 75g oral glucose load as in a glucose tolerance test.
- Kidney disease
- Heart attacks and strokes are brought on by heart and blood vessel disorders.
- Nerves (neuropathy) – Diabetes can cause blood vessels all throughout the body to become damaged. It makes it difficult to feel injuries by causing numbness and/or tingling in the hands and/or feet.
- Diabetes also slows the healing of wounds, which can result in infections and foot ulcers. Infection might also result from foot fungus. If left untreated, a foot infection can spread to the entire leg. The leg can get so infected that it has to be amputated (amputated).
- On the other hand, amputations can be avoided with proper foot care and blood sugar control.
- Retinopathy in the eyes caused by diabetes can cause gradual vision loss or blindness by harming the blood vessels in the eyes. A person with diabetes should have their eyes checked once a year if an eye clinic is nearby. Keeping blood sugar levels low may aid in the eyes’ recovery if vision becomes hazy.
Regardless of the kind of diabetes a person has, controlling glucose levels is essential for diabetic management. Even if the patient is asymptomatic, management of diabetes should begin as soon as a diagnosis is made. The key to good diabetes control, management, and complication prevention is patient education on lifestyle changes and diabetes management.
The administration should include the following
- Monitoring your blood sugar (glucose) is essential to figuring out how effective your current treatment strategy is. It provides you with advice on daily, and occasionally hourly, diabetes management. With frequent checks with a glucose meter and finger stick or a continuous glucose monitor, you can keep an eye on your readings (CGM). The ideal blood sugar range for you will be decided by you and your healthcare practitioner.
- Diabetes oral medications: Oral diabetes drugs, typically used by those with Type 2 diabetes, help control blood sugar levels in diabetics who still make some insulin. There are numerous varieties. The most popular drug is metformin.
- Insulin: To survive and control Type 1 diabetes, people must inject synthetic insulin. Moreover, some Type 2 diabetics need insulin. There are numerous varieties of artificial insulin. Each one begins to function at a different rate and remains in your body for various amounts of time. The four primary methods of ingesting insulin are rapid-acting inhaled insulin, insulin pens, insulin pumps, and injectable insulin with a syringe (shot).
- Diet: Since food has a significant impact on blood sugar levels, meal planning and selecting a healthy diet for you are important components of managing diabetes. Counting the carbs in your food and drink is a big component of managing diabetes if you take insulin. How many carbohydrates you consume affects how much insulin you require at meals. You can manage your weight and lower your chance of developing heart disease by adopting healthy eating habits. Diabetes patients should have modest, frequent meals on a regular basis because skipping or skipping a meal can cause low blood sugar levels.
- Exercise: As exercise improves insulin sensitivity (and lowers insulin resistance), it is crucial for all diabetics to regularly engage in physical activity. As a result of the elevated risk for heart disease, it’s crucial to keep your weight, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels in check.
The onset of Type 2 diabetes can be delayed or prevented by altering lifestyle habits. Although the autoimmune and hereditary forms of diabetes are unavoidable, there are certain steps you may take to reduce your risk of getting Type 2 diabetes, such as:
- Consuming a balanced diet that is high in fruits and vegetables.
- Take up some exercise. Strive for at least 30 minutes every day, five days a week.
- Strive to reach a healthy weight for you.
- Control your tension.
- Reduce alcohol consumption.
- Obtain enough sleep each night (about 7 to 9 hours), and get help if you have a sleep condition.
- Give up smoking and stay away from secondhand smoke.
- To address pre-existing risk factors for heart disease, use drugs as prescribed by your healthcare professional.
Despite the fact that diabetes can cause major medical consequences, it is treatable with medication and dietary adjustments. Because “prevention is better than cure,” it is crucial that society as a whole become aware of the disease’s prevention, early identification, and management.