This chronic disease affects millions of people every year.
Diabetes refers to a grouping of relatively common diseases that affect how the body’s blood glucose (or more commonly, blood sugar) is regulated and utilized. Most people have heard of Type 1, Type 2, Gestational, or prediabetes at some point. Every year, 1.5 million Americans are diagnosed with diabetes. Due to its prevalence, there have been many misconceptions that have circled the rumor mill, leading to misinformation and confusion in regards its treatment and prevention. Separating fact from fiction is vital in order to properly handle diabetic symptoms.
Myth: Diabetics can’t eat sugar.
Fact: Consumption of sugar is not the only contributing factor. Weight, family history, age, and ethnicity also play a part. Additionally, sugar is vital to healthy cell life as it is an important energy source. That being said, all people should monitor their sugar intake, especially diabetics. How much sugar can eat depends on their medications and treatment plan with their doctor. Sugar should be ingested in moderation not only for diabetics, but also for people without it.
Myth: Obesity causes diabetes.
Fact: Although it is less common in slender people, not everyone with diabetes is overweight, and not all overweight people have this chronic condition. Genes play a factor in whether or not you develop the disease. According to the American Diabetes Association, “You inherit a predisposition to the disease then something in your environment triggers it.” That’s why it is important for everyone to maintain healthy dietary habits and prevent triggering diabetes.
Myth: Insulin shots hurt.
Fact: Aichmophobia, or a fear of needles, often gets brought up as a source of anxiety in regards to treatment for this chronic condition. The thought of injecting themselves every day can stress people out and make them less inclined to seek treatment. However, most people tend to find that insulin shots don’t hurt very much. Needles these days are much smaller, and inflict much less discomfort than their predecessors. The pain associated with insulin shots has been studied and was found to be markedly less painful than anticipated. Additionally, most diabetics do not require insulin injections and can be managed with pills.
Myth: Diabetes always results in amputation.
Fact: Although diabetes certainly can lead to an amputation, the rate of diabetic related amputations has steadily declined for the past several years. There are about 73,000 amputations performed in the United States every year as a result of this chronic condition, but that only accounts for a small portion of the 23.6 million diagnosed cases in the United States today. The truth is, adopting healthy diabetes management skills makes avoiding foot ulcers (which lead to amputation) fairly simple.
Myth: Diabetes isn’t that serious of a disease.
Fact: While it is perceived to be less threatening than cancer or other ailments, it should not be taken lightly. Diabetes kills more people in the United States than breast cancer and AIDS combined. One reason it seems less serious is because of how manageable it can be, but this doesn’t change the fact that it can be deadly.
Healthpointe is here to help set the record straight on the misinformation being spread about diabetes. For more information on diabetes management, call 888-719-8448 or make an appointment today to speak to one of our doctors.