What Is Type 2 Diabetes | Symptoms | Treatment | Causes

What Is Type 2 Diabetes?

  • The condition is known as type 2 diabetes. It’s a long-lasting illness that hinders your body from utilizing insulin in the way it is supposed to. Patients who have Type 2 diabetes have been believed to be insulin resistant.
  • People who are middle-aged and older are more likely to suffer from this type of diabetes. It was once known as adult-onset diabetes. However, type 2 diabetes is a problem for teens and children, most often due to weight gain during childhood.
  • Type 2 diabetes is by far the most well-known kind of diabetes. Around 29 million people are living in the U.S. with type 2. The remaining 84 million suffer from prediabetes. This means that your blood sugar level (or the blood sugar) is elevated but not enough to cause diabetes.

Signs and Symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes

The signs of type 2 diabetes may be so minor that it’s hard to notice. The majority of people with the disease do not know about it. Its symptoms include:

  • Being extremely thirsty
  • Peeing a lot
  • Blurry vision
  • Being cranky
  • Numbness or tingling sensations in your feet or hands
  • Fatigue/feeling worn out
  • Wounds that won’t heal
  • persistent Yeast infections
  • Feeling hungry
  • Weight loss without effort
  • More infections are coming up.

If you’ve noticed black rashes that appear around the armpits or neck area, consult your physician. They are known as acanthosis nigricans and indicate your body getting intolerant to insulin.

Causes of Type 2 Diabetes

The pancreas is the organ that produces an insulin-like hormone. It assists your cells to convert glucose, a kind of sugar derived from foods you consume, into energy. People who have type 2 diabetes produce insulin, but their cells do not make it as efficiently as they ought to.

In the beginning, your pancreas releases more insulin to introduce sugar into cells. But, over time, it’s unable to keep up, and glucose accumulates in the bloodstream instead.

Most often, a combination of factors can cause Type 2 Diabetes. It could be:

  • Genes. Scientists have identified different pieces of DNA that influence how your body makes insulin.
  • Additional weight. Being obese or overweight can result in insulin resistance, mainly if you carry extra weight in your middle.
  • “Metabolic Syndrome. Patients with insulin resistance frequently suffer from several conditions such as high blood sugar and excess fat around the waist and hips, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and triglycerides.
  • Excessive glucose in your liver. If your blood sugar is lower, the liver produces and releases glucose. When you eat the food, your blood sugar will go up, and your liver tends to reduce its activity and store the glucose to use later. However, some livers aren’t. They keep pumping out sugar.
  • Bad communication between cells. Sometimes, cells transmit incorrect signals or do not recognize messages correctly. If these problems impact how your cells produce and utilize glucose or insulin, the chain reaction could cause diabetes.
  • Broken beta cells. If the cells responsible for making insulin release an insufficient quantity of insulin at the right moment, the blood sugar level gets out of balance. A high blood sugar could damage these cells too.

Type 2 Diabetes Risk Factors

Certain factors can increase the likelihood that you’ll develop Type 2 Diabetes. If you have more than one of the following apply to your situation, the better your odds of getting it. Certain aspects are connected to your personality:

  • Age. 45 or over
  • Family. A sister, parent or brother suffering from diabetes
  • Ethnicity. African American, Alaska Native, Native American, Asian American, Hispanic or Latino, or Pacific Islander American

Risk factors relating to your medical and health history are:

  • Prediabetes
  • The heart and the blood vessels diseases
  • Blood pressure that is high even if it’s managed and controlled
  • low HDL (“good”) cholesterol
  • High triglycerides
  • Being overweight or obese
  • A baby that weighed more than 9 pounds
  • Gestational diabetes during the time you were pregnant
  • Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
  • Depression

Other things that can increase the risk of developing diabetes have resulted from your routine habits and your lifestyle. They are the ones that you can take action on:

  • Getting little or no exercise
  • Smoking
  • Stress
  • Not enough sleep or taking in too often

Type 2 Diabetes Diagnosis and Tests

The doctor will examine your blood for indications that indicate type 2 diabetes. Usually, they’ll check you every two days to confirm the diagnosis. However, if your blood sugar is highly excessive or you’re suffering from a variety of symptoms, one test might be all you require.

  • A1c. It’s the equivalent of your blood glucose levels over the last 2 or 3 months.
  • “Fasting Plasma Glucose. This test is often referred to as an overnight glucose test for blood. It is a test to determine your blood sugar level on an empty stomach. You’ll be unable to drink or eat anything other than water for eight hours before the test.
  • Test for oral glucose tolerance (OGTT). It tests your blood glucose two hours before and after drinking something sweet to determine how your body’s body reacts to the sugar.

Type 2 Diabetes Treatment

The treatment of type 2 diabetes involves various lifestyle modifications and medications.

Lifestyle shifts

It is possible to attain your goal blood sugar levels through the combination of exercise and diet.

  • Weight loss.Dropping extra pounds can help. Although losing 5 per cent of your weight is great, losing at least 7percent and then keeping it off is a good idea. This means that anyone who weighs 180lbs could alter your blood sugar by losing about 13 pounds. Losing weight can be daunting; however, controlling portions and eating nutritious food items is a great starting point.
  • Healthful eating. There’s no dietary guideline for people with type 2 diabetes. Dietitians who are registered can instruct you about carbohydrates and assist in creating a plan for your meals that you will stick to. It would be best if you concentrated on:
  • Eating fewer calories
  • Reducing refined carbs, particularly sweets
  • Include fruits and veggies in your diet
  • Increase your fibre intake
  • Exercise. It would be best if you aimed to do 30-60 minutes of exercise each day. You can cycle, walk or swim, or do whatever else you can do to get your heart rate elevated. Combine that with strength training like lifting weights or yoga. If you’re taking a medication that reduces blood sugar levels, you may require a snack before exercising.
  • Watch your blood sugar levels.Based on your treatment, particularly if you’re taking insulin or other insulin, your doctor will inform you when to examine for blood sugar and when to test it.
Type 2 Diabetes
Hand holding a blood glucose meter measuring blood sugar, the background is a stethoscope and chart file

Medication

If your lifestyle choices don’t bring you to your desired blood sugar level, you might require medications. The most frequently used treatments for Type 2 diabetes symptoms include:

Metformin

(Fortamet, Glucophage, Glumetza, Riomet). It is typically the first medication prescribed for treating type 2 diabetes. It reduces the amount of glucose that your liver produces and allows your body to respond well to any insulin.

Sulfonylureas.

This class of medications helps the body to produce more insulin. These comprise the drugs glimepiride (Amaryl) and the glipizide (Glucotrol, Metaglip), and Glyburide (DiaBeta, Micronase).

Meglitinides.

They assist your body to make more insulin and perform faster than Sulfonylureas. It is possible to use the drug nateglinide (Starlix) or the repaglinide (Prandin).

Thiazolidinediones.

As with metformin, they can cause you to be more sensitive to insulin. Pioglitazone is one of them. (Actos) or Rosiglitazone (Avandia). They also increase the chance of developing heart issues. They’re not usually the first option to treat.

DPP-4 inhibitors.

These drugs -such as linagliptin (Tradjenta) as well as Saxagliptin (Onglyza) sitagliptin (Januvia) aid in helping reduce blood sugar levels; however, they also can cause joint pain and may also cause inflammation of your pancreas.

GLP-1 receptor antagonists.

Needles take these medications to reduce digestion and blood sugar level. The most popular remedies include exenatide (Byetta, Bydureon), Liraglutide (Victoza) as well as semaglutide (Ozempic).

SGLT2 inhibitors.

This aid your kidneys in filtering the glucose. There is a chance that you will receive canagliflozin (Invokana) or dapagliflozin (Farxiga), and empagliflozin (Jardiance). Empagliflozin is also effective in reducing the chance of death or hospitalization due to heart failure.

Insulin.

It is possible to take shots that last in the evening, like insulin detemir (Levemir) or insulin Glargine (Lantus).

  • Even if you alter your lifestyle and use your medication according to the directions, the blood sugar level could remain elevated as time passes. It doesn’t mean you’ve sinned. The progression of diabetes is inevitable, and many patients eventually require more than one medication.
  • If you are taking multiple medications to treat your type 2 diabetes, this is known as combination therapy.
  • You and your doctor should work together to discover the most effective mix for you. Most often, you’ll continue taking metformin but add something else.
  • The exact definition of what you need to consider will depend on the circumstances of your life. Certain drugs can help reduce high blood sugar levels (your doctor might refer to this as hyperglycemia), which occur right after eating, for instance. Some are more effective in slowing down the drop in blood sugar (hypoglycemia) after meals. Certain types of supplements can aid in losing weight or cholesterol along with your diabetic issues.
  • You and your doctor are required to discuss possible negative side consequences. The cost could be a concern too.
  • If you are taking medications for another reason, it will have to be considered in any decision.
  • You’ll have to see your doctor more often once you begin taking a new drug combination.
  • There is a chance that adding another medication doesn’t keep your blood sugar in your control. The combination of two medications may be effective only for a brief period. If that is the case, you should consult your physician about an additional noninsulin drug or even insulin therapy.

Prevention

Living a healthy and balanced way of life can lower developing diabetes.

  • Lose weight.Just a drop of 7%- 10 per cent of your weight will reduce the risk of having type 2 diabetes by half.
  • Exercise. Thirty minutes of vigorous walking each day will reduce the risk by about one-third.
  • Eat well. Avoid refined carbs as well as sugary drinks and saturated and trans fats. Reduce red and processed meats.
  • Stop smoking cigarettes. Consult your physician to avoid getting overweight after you quit to avoid creating problems by solving one.

Complications

As time passes, high blood sugar levels can cause harm and cause issues in your:

  • The heart and blood vessels.There’s a five-fold increase in the risk of developing heart disease or suffering a stroke. Also, you’re at a higher risk of having blocked blood vessels (atherosclerosis) and chest pain (angina).
  • Kidneys.When your kidneys have been damaged or suffer from kidney failure, You may require dialysis or a replacement kidney.
  • Eyes.High blood sugar could damage the tiny blood vessels in the back that surround your eye (retinopathy). If not treated, it could lead to blindness.
  • Nerves.This can cause issues with digestion, feeling on your feet, and sexual response.
  • Skin. Your blood doesn’t circulate well, and wounds heal less quickly and may be infected.
  • Pregnancy.Women with diabetes are at a higher risk to experience a spontaneous miscarriage, stillbirth or a child born with congenital disabilities.
  • Sleep.You may suffer from sleep apnea, an illness in which your breathing ceases and then resumes when you rest.
  • Hearing.There is a higher chance of hearing issues; however, it’s unknown why.
  • Brain.High blood sugar levels can harm the brain and make you more susceptible to developing Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Depression.Patients with depression have twice the chance to be depressed as those who don’t suffer from it.

The best method to prevent these problems is to control type 2 diabetes properly.

  • Take your diabetes medication or insulin as prescribed.
  • Make sure to check your blood sugar.
  • Be mindful of your diet, and don’t skip meals.
  • Visit your doctor regularly to determine any early indications of problems.

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