NOVEMBER is Diabetes Awareness Month. Diabetes is a disease in which the body is not able to process glucose correctly, either due to no production or low production of insulin by the pancreas and/or the cells insensitivity to insulin.
During the past few weeks diabetes has been explained, causes, risk factors, diet and possible lifestyle changes. Treatment of diabetes is largely dependent on whether you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes is the more common of the two types of diabetes and is usually treated with oral medicine, if diet and exercise are not effective. The most commonly used oral medicine used fall into two major groups of drugs. One group of drugs increases the bodyâ€™s cells to insulin, therefore allowing the cells to react to the insulin and absorb and use the glucose in the blood stream, it also reduces the amount of glucose that the liver produces. This particular type of drug is usually used hand in hand with diet and exercise for it to be highly effective.
The second group of drugs help encourage the body to produce more insulin, but they have a short period of action. The less commonly used drugs are one group that reduces the rate of digestion of food, therefore reducing the amount of glucose released into the blood stream.
The newest group of drugs used in the treatment of type 2 diabetes are a group of drugs that stop the kidneys from reabsorbing sugar from the blood and allowing the excess glucose to be excreted in urine.
Type 1 diabetes is usually diagnosed in early stages of life and requires treatment with insulin. There are also some people with type 2 diabetes that require treatment with insulin. Insulin is a hormone produced by cells found on the human pancreas. When these cells either stop producing insulin or reduce the amount of hormone they produce, it is necessary to use insulin from another source. Insulin is degraded by gastric juices and cannot be swallowed; it is therefore injected into the body. There are four types of insulin used in the treatment of diabetes. Rapid acting insulin starts to work within fifteen minutes of injection. Short acting insulin starts to work thirty minutes after injection. Intermediate acting insulin begins to act between two to four hours after injection and continues to act for up to 12 hours after injection. Long acting insulin begins to work about four hours after injection and can have effect up to 24 hours after injection. In some cases, usually the beginning of treatment, two types of insulin may be used together until appropriate control of sugar levels has been achieved.
All medication for diabetes is used together with exercise and a diet rich in fruits and vegetables. Once optimal sugar control has been reached a diabetic person should visit their doctor at least once every three months to ensure everything is alright.
For more information on the treatment of Diabetes