Texas Family Practice Associates
Samuel L. Siegler, II, MD
Family Practice Physician & Primary Care located in Houston, TX
Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects over 30 million people in the United States and, if left unchecked, leads to serious health complications. The key to minimizing the impact diabetes has on your health is vigilant management, which Dr. Samuel Siegler II provides at Texas Family Practice Associates in Houston. For expert monitoring and treatment of your diabetes, call or book an appointment online.
Diabetes Q & A
What is diabetes?
Diabetes is a condition that affects your body’s ability to regulate its blood sugar levels. Your blood sugar is regulated by the hormone insulin, which is produced by your pancreas. If your body is unable to produce insulin, or it doesn’t use the insulin you do produce properly, your body is unable to control the level of glucose in your blood.
To understand why controlling blood sugar is important, it’s good to step back and review the role of sugar, or glucose, in your blood. Your body uses glucose for energy, and the glucose is delivered into your cells by insulin. If your body isn’t producing any insulin, or the insulin you have isn’t able to work properly, the sugar in your blood isn’t dispersed to where it’s needed, so it builds up in your bloodstream. Over time, chronically high blood sugar can lead to serious health problems.
What are the types of diabetes?
The three main forms of diabetes are:
- Type 1 diabetes, which is caused by little to no insulin production
- Type 2 diabetes, which is usually caused by insulin resistance and not enough insulin production
- Gestational diabetes, which occurs during pregnancy
Type 2 diabetes is the most common type. But whatever the form diabetes takes, its results are that your blood sugar levels are too high.
What puts people at risk for diabetes?
Heredity appears to be the biggest risk factor for developing type 1 diabetes, especially if a parent, brother, or sister has the disease. Your risk for developing type 2 diabetes goes up as you age, if you have a family history, and if you have certain health conditions, such as high blood pressure or polycystic ovary syndrome. There are several lifestyle factors that put you at risk for type 2 diabetes, including being overweight and physically inactive.
How is diabetes treated?
Since there’s no cure for diabetes, proper management of the disease is paramount. Dr. Siegler helps you manage your diabetes by diligently monitoring the condition at your checkups. Good glucose control helps you avoid the serious risks that come with diabetes, such as heart attack, stroke, or irreparable nerve damage.
Dr. Siegler uses several approaches that may include an exercise plan, nutrition counseling to help you follow a healthy diet, and prescribing oral medications or insulin, if needed. Regular checkups will help you take steps toward leading a healthy and active life with diabetes. To learn more, call or book an appointment online.