Friday, 5 December 2008

Do you have diabetes and not know it?

Did you know that being over the age of 40 alone puts you at risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes? Everybody over that age should get their blood sugar checked at least every three years.

More than 2 million Canadians and 23.6 million Americans have diabetes but at least a quarter of them don't know it!

Most people diagnosed with diabetes have Type 2 diabetes.

If you're over the age of 40 and have any of the following risk factors, you're at a higher risk of developing diabetes and should have your blood sugar checked earlier and more often:

Overweight or obese,
Have a family history of diabetes,
Are a member of any of the following high-risk ethnic groups: African, Hispanic, Native American/Aboriginal, Asian American and South Asian, Pacific Islander,
Have high blood pressure or high cholesterol,
Had gestational diabetes when you were pregnant,
Gave birth to a baby that weighed more than 9lbs (4kg),
Been diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome, acanthosins nigricans or scizophrenia.

Click here to determine your risk for having diabetes.

Symptoms of diabetes include:

Being very thristy,
Having to urinate frequently,
Weight change,
Low energy and fatigue,
Blurred vision,
Recurring infections,
Cuts that take time healing,
Tingling or numb hands and feet,
Trouble getting or maintaining an erection.

If you have any of these symptoms, talk to your doctor.
If diabetes goes undiagnosed and untreated, you have a high risk of having a stroke or heart attack, of organ and nerve damage, of having eye problems than can lead to blindness, gum and mouth disease and skin disorders.

The good news is that all these complications can be avoided with early detection and treatment.

Visit the CDA and the ADA websites for more information and talk to your doctor to schedule your next blood test!