Five Tips to Control The Side Effects of Diabetes

In the United States today, 25.8 million children and adults currently suffer from diabetes. Maintaining a healthy blood glucose level is important, but if you suffer from or are prone to diabetes, you must be aware of other factors. 

These tips may help:

1. Maintain Healthy Blood Pressure and Cholesterol Levels

The larger the waistline is, the greater the risk of diabetes, elevated cholesterol and high blood pressure. Ask your doctor if they can connect you with a diabetic educator who can help you learn about eating a healthy diet, exercise and other steps to prevent worsening symptoms, such as heart attacks and strokes.

2. Keep Track of Your Kidneys

Be sure your doctor monitors your kidney levels since kidney disease is a common side effect of poorly controlled diabetes. Ask about ACE inhibitors, a specific type of blood pressure pill that protects the kidneys. If not monitored, kidneys can fail and dialysis becomes necessary.

3. Schedule Yearly Eye Exams

Each year, your eye doctor should screen for diabetic retinopathy. This occurs when elevated sugar levels cause vessels to form in the eye that could burst, scar the retina and cause blindness.

4. Understanding Insulin

Many diabetic patients fear insulin shots, but today they are more sophisticated and almost pain free – with needles as thin as a human hair. Insulin is unable to be ingested since it must disperse through your body slowly, so this must be achieved by injection. If you start early enough on insulin, you prevent your diabetes from worsening.

5. Find out if your doctor keeps a diabetic registry

Ask your doctor to keep you in a diabetic registry. This tracks diabetic patients to ensure they receive correct medication, blood work, yearly eye exams and other preventative measures. It also helps doctors catch deficiencies before they escalate.

Living with diabetes can be daunting, however properly caring for diabetes and taking preventative measures can eliminate more serious side effects and allow for a healthier and happier life.

Dr James S. Costlow is a member of the team of physicians at Premier Medical Associates. For more information, visit the website