Vital Diabetes Information for Nassau County Adults and Children
Diabetes is a common health condition that now affects more than eight percent of Nassau County adults. However, diabetes is a highly treatable disease — developed by both adults and children — that can be successfully managed through medical treatment and living a healthy lifestyle. To help your family stay healthy and happy, learn some valuable diabetes information.
What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is a chronic, long-lasting health condition that affects how your body turns food into energy. It occurs when an individual’s blood glucose, also known as blood sugar, is too high. Over time, this condition can cause serious health problems. Today, about 34 million Americans have diabetes.
Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 Diabetes is believed to be caused by an autoimmune reaction in which the body attacks itself by mistake, stopping it from making insulin. Although the exact cause is unknown, you can learn to recognize common symptoms, like these:
- Increased thirst
- Frequent urination
- Extreme hunger
- Unintended weight loss
- Irritability and other mood changes
- Fatigue and weakness
- Blurred vision
Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 Diabetes is a medical condition that may cause more serious symptoms. Individuals who have Type 2 Diabetes don’t use insulin well and cannot maintain normal blood sugar levels. It has many of the same symptoms as Type 1, but those who have it may also experience slow-healing sores, frequent infections and areas of darkened, usually in the armpits and neck.
Recognizing Risk Factors for Diabetes
Individuals may develop diabetes for a variety of reasons, such as having these risk factors:
- Family history of diabetes can increase your risk of developing it
- Individuals over age 45 are at higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes
- African Americans, Hispanics, American Indians, and Asians are at higher risk
- Being overweight
- A lack of consistent physical activity
- High blood pressure and cholesterol
Tips for Managing Diabetes
The good news is that if you become knowledgeable about diabetes, you can live a long, healthy, and happy life.
5 Easy Ways to Manage Diabetes
- Eat a healthy diet
- Quit smoking
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Exercise regularly
- Go to the doctor when necessary
When to Consider Seeing a Doctor
Untreated Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes can negatively affect major organs in the body. If you have been experiencing these symptoms, consult a health care professional for more diabetes information.
What is Childhood Diabetes?
In children, Type 1 diabetes occur when a child’s body no longer produces insulin. There is no cure, but it is possible to manage the symptoms of childhood diabetes. Many of the symptoms are the same as adult diabetes except that children may also experience fruity-smelling breath.
Treating Childhood Diabetes
Childhood diabetes can be successfully managed if you take certain recommended steps, including:
- Take insulin as prescribed
- Eat a balanced diet
- Monitor blood sugar levels as prescribed
- Exercise regularly
Get More Diabetes Information from Family Health Centers
If you or your child are experiencing symptoms of diabetes, consider coming into a Family Health Centers’ location for diabetes information. We provide community-based health services to Long Islanders of all backgrounds, regardless of insurance status or the ability to pay. Contact us to learn how we can help you get and stay healthy.