The number of Americans diagnosed with diabetes or prediabetes in 2017 is extremely high, and all indications are that the diabetes epidemic - not just in the U.S. but all over the globe - isn’t going away anytime soon. So how do you know if you’re going to become the next diabetes statistic?
You’re at risk to become diabetic if you
· have already been diagnosed with prediabetes
· have a family history of the disease
· are overweight
· are over the age of 45
· live a sedentary lifestyle
· have had gestational diabetes (a form of diabetes that affects pregnant women)
· are in a high-risk ethnic group (which includes Americans of African, Latino, Native American, and Alaskan native descent)
The American Diabetes Association recommends that all people 45 years old or older be tested for diabetes. They also recommend screening for younger people if they possess any of the major risk factors. Why? Because it’s important to catch diabetes early and to treat it promptly. Undetected or uncontrolled diabetes wreaks havoc on the whole body. Blindness, kidney failure, nerve damage, and blood vessel damage are common, as are heart disease, stroke, and serious complications of the foot.
Talk to your doctor
If you believe you fall in a high-risk category and your primary care physician hasn’t brought up the idea of a diabetes screening, be proactive. Ask him or her about taking a simple blood test. Blood will be drawn, analyzed in a lab, and the level of sugar in your blood will be measured. If there’s any concern, you and your doctor can come up with a plan to control or even reverse the progress of diabetes.
All patients with diabetes should visit a podiatrist
Complications of the foot are a real concern for those with diabetes. Residents of Monmouth County, New Jersey who have newly been diagnosed with diabetes are encouraged to make an appointment for a foot checkup with board-certified podiatrists Samantha Boyd, DPM, Hal Ornstein, DPM, Joseph Saka, DPM, or Katy Statler, DPM at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Center. We have offices in Howell and Jackson and we offer after-work and Saturday morning office hours. Give us a call at (732) 905-1110.