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What is Diabetes?

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What is Diabetes?

  • The body does not make or use insulin properly
  • Insulin is a hormone that is needed to help our body process food for energy
  • A fasting blood sugar greater than or equal to 126 mg/dl on two occasions or an A1C test of 6.5% or greater are two common ways to diagnose diabetes
  • Type 1 diabetes occurs when the body does not make insulin.  Insulin by injection or by pump is required to treat the disease.  Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes.  Treatment can range from healthy eating and exercise to oral and/or injectable medication.
  • Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to complications such as eye, kidney, heart, and nerve damage.  Controlling blood sugars and preventive care can delay or prevent these complications.

What is Prediabetes?

  • Comes before the onset of type 2 diabetes
  • Blood sugar numbers are higher than normal but not yet in the diabetes range.  Fasting blood sugar levels of 100-125 mg/dl or an A1C test of 5.7 – 6.4% are two common ways to diagnose prediabetes
  • Risk of heart disease and stroke is 1.5 times higher than in people with normal blood sugar levels
  • Lifestyle changes can delay or prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes

What is Gestational Diabetes?

  • Elevated blood sugars during pregnancy
  • Increased health risk to the developing baby such as the baby becoming too fat which can cause problems such as shoulder damage during birth.  High blood sugars during pregnancy can also cause the baby to have breathing problems or low blood sugar at birth.
  • A woman with gestational diabetes can have a healthy baby.  By meeting with our diabetes care team, you will be provided the information and treatment you need to keep your blood sugars under control which will help you and your baby stay healthy.
  • 70% of women with gestational diabetes will develop type 2 diabetes in their lifetime.