More than 29 million US adults have diabetes and 86 million US adults are considered pre-diabetic. Approximately 1.25 million diabetics are living with type 1 diabetes including 200,000 youths (less than 20 years old). When the body doesn’t have enough insulin (type 1 diabetes) or can’t use it effectively (type 2 diabetes), blood sugar builds up in the blood. High blood sugar levels can lead to complications including heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure, and amputation.
People with type 1 diabetes need to take insulin for life to survive. Their life is a constant balancing act of monitoring blood sugar level, injecting or continually infusing insulin through a pump, and balancing insulin doses with eating and daily activities throughout the day and night. People with type 2 diabetes utilize healthy eating, regular physical activity, and medication to lower blood sugar to help prevent or delay complications. Both groups need to work closely with healthcare providers to receive education, check-ups, and support to self-manage their health.
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