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Treatments of Diabetes

Prior to the discovery of insulin in 1921, people with type 1 diabetes died within a few years of diagnosis. Although insulin is not considered an antidote, the discovery is the first major breakthrough in the treatment of diabetes.

Today, healthy eating, physical activity, and insulin through injection or insulin pumps are the basic therapy for type 1 diabetes. The amount of insulin must be balanced with diet and daily activities. Blood glucose levels must be monitored carefully through regular blood glucose checks.

Healthy eating, physical activity, and blood glucose testing are basic management tools for type 2 diabetes. In addition, many type 2 diabetes patients need drugs and oral insulin to control their blood glucose levels.

People with diabetes must take responsibility for their daily care. Most daily care involves keeping your blood glucose levels low or too high. When blood glucose levels drop too low for certain diabetes medications - a condition known as hypoglycemia - one can become nervous, shaky, and confused. Judgment can deteriorate. If blood glucose drops too low, one can become weak.

Type 1 diabetes treatment: Type 1 diabetes must be treated with an insulin shot. This involves injecting insulin under the skin - in the fat - to be absorbed into the bloodstream where it can then access all the cells of the body that need it. Insulin cannot be taken as a pill because the juice in the stomach will destroy insulin before it works. Lack of insulin production by the pancreas makes type 1 diabetes very difficult to control. Treatment requires a strict regimen that usually includes a carefully calculated diet, planned physical activity, home blood glucose testing several times a day, and various daily insulin injections.

Type 2 diabetes treatment: Treatment usually includes diet control, exercise, home blood glucose testing, and, in some cases, oral and / or insulin medications. About 40 percent of type 2 diabetes patients require insulin injections.


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