Diabetes makes your blood sugar higher than normal. After many years, too much sugar in the blood can cause problems in your body. It can harm your eyes, kidneys, nerves, skin, heart, and blood vessels.
It is important to keep your blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol in a healthy range. You should learn the basic steps for managing diabetes and staying as healthy as possible. Steps include a healthy diet, exercise, and sometimes medicines. You may need to check your blood sugar daily or more often. Your doctor will also help you by ordering blood tests and other tests. All these may help you keep complications of diabetes away.
You will need to check your blood sugar level to see how you are doing.
To prevent heart disease and stroke, you may be asked to take medicine and change how you live:
To keep your feet healthy, you should:
A nurse or dietician will teach you about good food choices to lower your blood sugar and stay healthy. Make sure you know how to put together a balanced meal with protein and fiber. Try to eat at the same times each day.
If you have diabetes, you should see your health care providers every 3 months. At these visits your health care provider may:
The health care provider may also send you to the laboratory for blood and urine tests to:
Visit the dentist every 6 months. You should see your eye doctor once a year. Your health care provider may ask you to see your eye doctor more often.
American Diabetes Association. Standards of medical care in diabetes -- 2013. Diabetes Care. 2013;36 Suppl 1:S11-S66.
Updated by: Nancy J. Rennert, MD, Chief of Endocrinology & Diabetes, Norwalk Hospital, Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, David R. Eltz, Stephanie Slon, and Nissi Wang.
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