Five ways to prevent complications from type 2 diabetes
June 26, 2012
Type 2 diabetes, also referred to as adult-onset, is a serious disease that commonly afflicts seniors and affects the body’s ability to metabolize sugar. As a hormone that stimulates sugar metabolization, insulin can help regulate the negative effects of type 2. However, those suffering from it either lack insulin production or worse – could have bodies that resist insulin altogether.
If your relative has already received a diagnosis of diabetes, there are certain steps you can take together to ensure that he or she lives a healthy, active life. While complications related to type 2 can be dire – including blindness, heart disease, foot and nerve damage – with a few of these tips you can prevent your relative from developing any serious ailments as a result.
1. Keep blood pressure and sugar levels steady. Part of your relative’s daily maintenance routine involves monitoring his or her blood pressure and sugar levels to ensure that both are on goal. This is the key to unlocking a peaceful coexistence with type 2, and can eliminate other issues from developing.
If your relative is forgetful or sometimes lax about medicines, you may feel more anxious about what the future holds. With a medical alert watch by Bay Alarm, you can rest easily knowing that your relative can reach out to emergency staff in the event of an accident or mishap with his or her insulin intake.
2. Quit smoking. If your loved one has a smoking habit, it is imperative that you encourage him or her to set this aside for good. Smoking can result in increased blood pressure, which will exacerbate his or her ailing health and make the road toward healthy living that much harder to tread down. If he or she remains obstinate, consider asking a healthcare professional to appeal on your behalf of your relative.
3. Schedule eye examinations. The blood vessels of the retina can be especially sensitive to damage from diabetes. According to a recent estimate, as many as 24,000 new cases of blindness are the result of diabetes. By making sure that your relative undergoes his or her yearly examinations, you can treat emerging health issues early on and decrease the likelihood of developing cataracts, glaucoma and blindness.
4. Be active. The senior in your life may suffer from more than just type 2 diabetes, which could make physical exercise difficult for him or her to accomplish. However, just walking around the yard can stimulate your elder relative’s blood flow to different areas of the body and promote good health. If he or she is reticent, try an exercise group that specializes in senior wellness, or volunteer to spend an afternoon taking him or her for a walk.
5. Protect your feet. Even with a combination of exercise and diligent insulin intake, your relative’s feet could be damaged by complications that are common to type 2. The reason for this is diminished blood flow to the feet, which can cause feet to grow weak and more susceptible to infection. From calluses to open sores, problems vary and can only be prevented by consistent upkeep of the toes and feet. Remind your relative to keep his or her nails trimmed and feet protected from harsh temperatures, and to also inspect feet daily for abrasions, cuts or other irregularities. If feet are feeling tender, he or she can elevate them daily to improve circulation.