Diabetes is a common condition that affects how the body controls the blood sugar. It comes in two forms. The first is commonly referred to as Type 1 diabetes. This usually starts in the first 20 — 30 years of life with a strong family history component. Most Type 1 (or Insulin dependent diabetics) are under the care of specialist doctors in conjunction with general practice.
The other type of diabetes is Type 2 or non-insulin dependent diabetes. This commonly occurs in those older than 40 years but can occur in younger people. It is usually due to your body not making enough insulin to meet its needs, or your body no longer uses the insulin properly (insulin resistance). You may have both of these going on at once.
Risk factors for Type 2 diabetes are:
- Obesity (BMI > 30) or waist circumference > 100 cm
- Certain ethnicities (Polynesians and Maoris, South East Asians - particularly Indians)
- A parent or sibling with Type 2 diabetes
- Having diabetes whilst you are pregnant
- Having pre diabetes (often picked up on routine blood testing).
People with diabetes are at risk of eye disease, they are higher risk for strokes and heart attacks, are more likely to need dialysis for kidney disease and there is a higher chance of having a limb amputated due to poor circulation and nervous system disruption.
Our staff at Health New Lynn are trained to diagnose and treat your diabetes. If you are a Maori, Polynesian, or South East Asian you should be screened for diabetes at age 35 years and then every 5 years thereafter. If you are a European male or have a positive family history of diabetes you need to be tested at age 45 yrs then 5 years thereafter. All others need testing from age 55 years. Please ask our clinical staff for a blood test form.
We have specially trained nursing staff to support you and your doctor in managing your diabetes. Clinical staff can help you with your diet, exercise, weight and the impact of the diabetes on you and your family. They can help in consultation with your doctor to manage your diabetic treatment whether it be tablets or insulin injections.
We recommend that all those with diabetes have regular checks with the practice nurse.
Diabetes can be a challenging disease for you. The lifestyle changes you need to make can be difficult to do. You are commonly on four to five medications daily that need to be taken for life. We usually will need to see you every three months.
Please make contact our practice nurses to discuss any problems.
If you smoke we strongly recommend you stop and we can give you expert advice on how to achieve this.
It is anticipated that hospital services will be available in the centre to manage more complicated patients.