Diabetes is a chronic metabolic disorder that increases blood glucose levels and insulin resistance. Upon its onset, individuals may notice symptoms such as excessive hunger and thirst, frequent urination, extreme fatigue, and irritability. However, these symptoms can evolve into more severe complications like hypertension and hearing loss. Yet with proper treatment and a healthy lifestyle, many people who suffer from diabetes can delay or avert the physiological problems that often result from this disease. Below are some of the more common diabetes complications and how to avoid their development.
Hypertension, or high blood pressure, affects nearly two-thirds of those diagnosed with diabetes. If left untreated, it can induce the risk of other diabetes-related issues, such as heart attack, stroke, and kidney failure. However, many management methods exist for the treatment of hypertension. First, your physician can administer highly effective high blood pressure medications, including ACE inhibitors, beta blockers, and calcium channel blockers. Second, patients can become proactive in maintaining their blood pressure levels by engaging in preventive health measures, like maintaining good eating habits and a regular exercise regimen. Studies have shown that by upholding sound lifestyle choices, diabetes patients can greatly diminish their risk of hypertension.
Individuals with diabetes are twice as likely to experience hearing loss than those who do not suffer from this disease. How does diabetes contribute to hearing loss? Though the causal effects are yet to be fully understood, diabetes specialists believe that it stems from blood vessel damage. The ear structures depend upon small blood vessels for proper functioning. Researchers think that the high glucose levels from which diabetes patients suffer destroy these vessels. Hence, the onset of hearing loss. Therefore, blood glucose management is essential to ward off this common diabetes complication.
Diabetic patients can also suffer from neuropathy, or nerve damage. The high blood glucose levels that affect blood vessels can similarly destroy the nervous system, which relies on those vessels for nutrients. The extremities are particularly susceptible to the effects of neuropathy. Therefore, individuals with diabetes must be vigilant in maintaining their blood glucose levels to avoid this complication.
Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center provides comprehensive diabetes screenings and management options for individuals in the greater Las Vegas area. If you would like to learn more about our healthcare services, including our maternity hospital, please call our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (702) 880-2700.