More than 95 % of individuals with diabetes have Type 2 Diabetes (T2D). It (T2D) was formerly known as non-insulin dependent, or adult onset. Until recently, this diabetes (T2D) was noticed only in adults but it is now also occurring increasingly frequently in children.
Type 2 diabetes (T2D) affects how the body uses sugar (glucose) for energy. It blocks the body from using insulin appropriately, which can cause high levels of blood sugar in case left untreated. Over time, type 2 diabetes (T2D) can cause severe damage to the body, mainly nerves and blood vessels.
T2D is often preventable. Factors that contribute to developing the condition include being overweight, not getting ample exercise, and genetics. Early diagnosis is crucial to prevent the worst effects of Type 2 diabetes (T2D). The finest way to detect diabetes early is to get regular check-ups and blood tests with a healthcare professional.
Symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes:
Symptoms of type 2 diabetes (T2D) can be mild. They may take several years to be noticed. Symptoms may be identical to those of type 1 diabetes (T1D) but are often less marked. As a result, T2D may be diagnosed many years after onset, once complications have already occurred. Symptoms may include:
- feeling tired
- passing more urine
- being very thirsty
- feeling hungry
- having cuts that heal slowly
Over time, diabetes can lead to certain complications, which can then cause some other symptoms.
Lifestyle changes are the best way to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes (T2D). To help prevent the condition and its complications, individuals should:
- Reach and keep a healthy body weight
- Stay physically active with moderate exercise each day (at least 30 minutes)
- Consume a healthy diet, excluding sugar and saturated fat
- Not smoke tobacco.
Diagnosis and Treatment:
Early diagnosis can be done through relatively inexpensive testing of blood glucose. One of the most significant ways to treat T2D is to keep a healthy lifestyle. Some individuals with this condition will need to take medicines to help maintain their blood sugar levels. These can include insulin injections or some other therapeutic drugs. Some examples include:
- Sodium-glucose co-transporters type 2 (SGLT-2) inhibitors.
- Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist (Semaglutide)
Along with medications to scale down blood sugar, individuals with diabetes often need medications to reduce their blood pressure and statins to scale down the risk of complications. Additional medical care may be required to treat the effects of diabetes:
- foot care to treat ulcers
- screening and treatment for kidney disease
- eye exams to screen for retinopathy (which causes blindness).
Empowering people with the knowledge of type 2 diabetes (T2D) diagnosis and treatment is pivotal for promising management. By considering a holistic approach encompassing lifestyle changes, medications, and continuous/active monitoring, people can navigate T2D with resilience and lead fulfilling lives. Stay informed, and stay proactive – it’s the key to managing T2D effectively.