Complications

Devastating consequences can result from untreated or uncontrolled diabetes. Serious complications of diabetes include:

» Gum Disease & Tooth Loss

» Nerve Damage

» Damage to Blood Vessels

» Poor Circulation

» Blindness

» Amputation

» Kidney Failure

» Coma

» Heart Attack

» Stroke


High blood pressure and elevated blood glucose damages kidneys, nerves and blood vessels. Damaged glomeruli (filters) in the kidneys fail to effectively clear toxins from the blood. Waste builds up in the body and the kidneys begin to leak albumin, an important blood protein. Damage to blood vessels can result in poor blood flow to the extremities (peripheral vascular disease), affecting sensation and wound healing.

Damaged nerves are responsible for diminished sensation and transmission of errant signals. One of the complications associated with Type 1 Diabetes, gastroparesis, damages the nerves of the stomach. Food remains in the stomach too long making it even harder to control blood sugar levels.

High blood sugar feeds bacterial plaques increasing the possibility for problems with teeth and gums. There is a lot you can do to prevent serious diabetes related complications.

Prevention of Diabetes Related Complications

A major study sponsored by the National Institute for Diabetes & Digestive & Kidney Disease (NIDDK) concluded that those who kept their blood glucose within normal range reduced their risk of developing major complications associated with Type 1 Diabetes.

The Diabetes Control and Complications Trial (DCCT) said that diabetics should aim to keep their Hemoglobin A1c at 7% or lower. The Hemoglobin A1c Test measures the average amount of sugar in your blood over the last three months. The test results correlate to blood sugar levels in the following way:

Hemoglobin A1c Testing Blood Sugar (mg/dL)
4% 60
5% 190
6% 120
7% 150
8% 180
9% 210
10% 240
11% 270
 

Achieve optimum health and delay or prevent onset of major diabetes related complications by keeping your blood sugar, weight, blood pressure and cholesterol under control. The best way to do this is to:

» Eat a healthy diet

» Exercise regularly

» Don’t smoke*

» Monitor blood glucose frequently

» See your healthcare professionals regularly

» Take medications regularly as prescribed

» Perform self-care regularly to prevent and detect diabetes related problems


*Smoking constricts blood vessels, exacerbating circulation problems associated with diabetes.

The Problems The Solutions
Elevated Blood Sugar Diet and Exercise
High Blood Pressure Blood Glucose Monitoring
Overweight/Obese Medications
High Cholesterol Visit Healthcare Professionals
Risk of Complications Self Care and Checks