4.6 million people are living with diabetes in the UK. Around 90% of people have Type 2 Diabetes and 10% have Type 1 Diabetes.
Diabetes is a condition where the sugar levels in your blood become too high. This is because your body is either not producing enough Insulin or your body is not responding to the Insulin you are producing appropriately. Insulin is a hormone made by the pancreas that allows sugar from your food be converted to energy.
The common symptoms of diabetes are needing to pass urine more often, especially at night, feeling thirsty all the time and feeling tired all the time. Some people also suffer with problems with thrush, losing weight without intending. Some people are more likely to develop Diabetes, if you are over the age of 40, have a close relative with Diabetes or are overweight.
There is a simple blood test that can be done to check for Diabetes. This checks the sugar level in your blood. The results take 2-3 days to come back.
If you leave your blood sugar levels high then this can affect your eyes, nerves and kidneys. It can also increase the risk of a heart attack or stroke.
The sooner you know if you have Diabetes, the sooner you can start managing it. With Type 2 Diabetes, the most common type, this will be an in depth look at your diet and lifestyle to try and make improvements in order to lower your sugar levels. Your GP can support your through this and may recommend a dietician. For some people, medication may be needed to improve the sugar levels. Regular check ups if you have Diabetes is very important so to monitor for any complications.
If you have any concerns that you could have Diabetes then do not delay getting tested and seek help and advice from you GP. We can help organise the screening tests–please ring 01202 761150 or by online booking.
Dr Lucy Johnson, Bournemouth, October 2018