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Diabetes Affects Over 12% Of South African Adults – Achieving Healthy Outcomes Requires Education

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Diabetes Affects Over 12% Of South African Adults - Achieving Healthy Outcomes Requires Education

How does diabetes affect the body?

(CTN News) – The term diabetes mellitus refers to a group of conditions that affect the body’s ability to use blood glucose (sugar).

Occurs when the pancreas cannot produce insulin, or when the body cannot utilize the insulin it produces effectively. As a result, blood glucose levels rise. High blood glucose levels cause various organs to fail over time.

Different types of diabetes exist.

Diabetes type 1 can occur at any age, but is most common in children and adolescents. Type 1 is characterized by a lack of or minimal production of insulin by the pancreas. To maintain blood glucose levels, people with type 1 require insulin daily.

Last but not least, gestational is a type of that occurs during pregnancy. The condition affects both mother and child, but usually subsides after pregnancy.

It is possible to reverse pre-diabetes. In this condition, blood glucose levels are higher than normal, but not high enough to be considered. In the absence of lifestyle modification measures, it can lead to.

Diabetes is characterized by high blood sugar levels. The symptoms may include fatigue and weakness, excessive thirst, frequent urination, or weight loss without any effort on your part. Other symptoms of advanced disease include blurry vision, recurring infections or slow-healing sores.

What management measures are in place?

Depending on the type of, this may vary. In the case of type 1, insulin injections are required every day. Type 2 can be managed by adopting a healthy lifestyle, which includes an increased level of physical activity and a healthy diet.

It is pertinent to note, however, that type 2 diabetes is a progressive disease. To control their blood glucose levels, people with type 2 will need oral drugs and/or insulin as the disease progresses.

Maintaining normal blood glucose levels is only one aspect of managing diabetes. The blood pressure and cholesterol levels of people with diabetes must also be controlled by healthcare professionals. Furthermore, one of the most critical aspects of managing is protecting target organs such as the kidneys, the heart, or the feet from complications.

We have developed an acronym that sums up our approach to care at the University of Pretoria Research Centre: the four “Bs” and four “Cs”.

How can the condition be managed effectively?

The majority of people with in South Africa receive care through the public health system. It is an overburdened, overstretched, and under resourced system. Despite the free availability of  medication – including insulin – at primary care clinics, these systemic challenges affect diabetes care.

Diabetes education is often neglected by healthcare professionals due to long queues and overcrowded facilities. Consequently, people with do not receive the necessary education.

This, in turn, means that people lack a thorough understanding of their condition, which affects their ability to adopt self-management behaviors and comply with their medication regimen.

In addition, paper-based medical records are an additional barrier. There is a common problem of lost or misplaced medical records.

The difficulty of preserving patient histories and ensuring continuity of care is exacerbated in a context where healthcare professionals rotate frequently between departments. The implementation of structured diabetes care is difficult when the system is based on paper.

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