Diabetes Prevention & Treatment

Diabetes Prevention & Treatment

With over 29 million Americans living with diabetes, most of us know someone who is facing this disease. But did you know that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), another 86 million people are considered pre-diabetic?  If you face any of the risk factors for developing the disease, including family history, a lack of physical activity, or an unhealthy diet, you may be concerned to learn that an additional 8 million Americans do not even know that they, too, are living with this diabetes. 

Understanding the contributing factors in developing diabetes can go a long way in avoiding this diagnosis. Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes and is the result of insulin resistance. When your pancreas isn’t able to make enough insulin to keep your blood glucose levels normal, you can develop type 2 diabetes. Some people can help control their blood glucose with healthy eating and being active, but it takes a commitment to maintaining a lifestyle with a balanced, low-fat diet and exercising regularly, ideally 30 minutes a day, five days a week. You should always discuss your concerns with your physician, and consult with them before starting any nutrition or fitness plan. Preventing type 2 diabetes can result in living a healthier and longer life, as complications from the disease can include heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure, and amputations.

If you are diagnosed with diabetes, it is comforting to know that although it is a very serious disease, it can be managed through diet, physical activity and insulin. You and you doctor will create a treatment plan that addresses your personal needs. If you are a Medicare beneficiary, your coverage will help with the costs of many diabetes-related services and supplies. Medicare Part B helps covers some of the following expenses:

  • Diabetes self-management training
  • Yearly eye exam
  • Foot exam
  • Glaucoma tests
  • Nutrition therapy
  • Blood sugar (glucose) test strips
  • Blood sugar testing monitors
  • Insulin
  • Lancet devices and lancets
  • Glucose control solutions
  • Therapeutic shoes or insoles

Visit your physician regularly, and take advantage of Medicare’s annual “Wellness” visits. These appointments can be vital in addressing concerns and detecting potential symptoms of diabetes. Your physician can schedule screenings and tests that you need and will work with you to develop a plan to help you stay healthy and active.