Type 2 Diabetes
Diabetes mellitus is common. Diabetes affects about 1.4 million people in the UK – that’s about
3 in every 100 people. There are approximately 12,000 people with diabetes
in Wolverhampton. Of these people around 85% have type 2 diabetes.
Who does it affect?
type of diabetes occurs later in life usually developing over the age
of 30 and it gets commoner as we get older but it does appear in younger
people. People with diabetes in the family, those who are overweight
or had diabetes in pregnancy have an increased chance of type 2 diabetes.
It is more common in those of Asian or African-Caribbean origin.
What is Type 2 diabetes?
Type 2 diabetes
develops when the body does not produce enough insulin, or when the
tissues, such as muscle and fat, do not respond fully to the actions
of insulin and are resistant to its effects. This insulin resistance
gets worse with age, inactivity and especially the more overweight we
are. This loss of balance between the amounts of insulin we make and
the amount we need leads to the amount of glucose in the blood rising
because it can’t be used or metabolized properly
Over time the pancreas becomes less able to produce insulin and the
tissues become more resistant to its actions.
One result of that is that treatment needs to change to keep up with
this and eventually many people with Type 2 diabetes need insulin treatment
What are the symptoms?
can take several years for the blood sugar to reach a level where you
experience symptoms. Sometimes people are not aware of their symptoms
but other times people ignore their symptoms. That’s why Type
2 diabetes can be go a long time without being found out.
The most common symptoms include excessive thirst and a dry mouth, increased
production of urine, tiredness, infection/itching of the genitals, blurred
vision and weight loss.
Treating Type 2 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is a progressive condition, the treatment needed to control
it properly has to be adjusted over time. Treatment varies depending
on the stage of your diabetes. Initially it may be possible to maintain
control of blood glucose levels with healthy eating and exercise on its
own. However, most people need tablet treatment right from the start.
The treatment for your diabetes will change to include a combination
of healthy eating, exercise, weight control, various types of tablets
or insulin injection as required to keep you well controlled. This is
quite normal. After about 7 years, half of all people with Type 2 diabetes
will be on insulin.
Seeking advice and what care to
If you think you might have diabetes, don’t just
sit and worry about it. Go and see you doctor. A simple blood test
will give the answer. If you find you have diabetes, you can expect
to get lots of advice and help, as well as prompt treatment. You
should soon be feeling back to good health.
If you have Type 2 diabetes you will most likely be under GP team for
your diabetes care although you will see the specialist hospital team
as time goes on and your treatment changes. Always be clear who is responsible
for providing your care.
You should come to feel that you have a full understanding of your diabetes
and its treatment and that you feel in charge and in control of your
Your diabetes care providers should offer you full support, training
and education to be able to achieve this.
Your correct treatment plan should be discussed with you by your health
care team at most visits and any concerns or worries answered for you.
If your control is poor always ask if your treatment needs to be altered
in any way.