Aspirus Clinics

Why Care for Your Diabetes?

Uncontrolled diabetes is the leading cause of blindness, non-traumatic amputation and kidney failure in America.

However, the important thing to remember is that controlled diabetes along with managing the other risk factors that cause blood vessel problems is what prevents these scary complications. Simply having diabetes does not automatically lead to complications.

Managing diabetes is difficult and takes a team to be successful. Your team includes you, your doctors, diabetes educators and support people.

What are the complications?

Diabetes is a blood vessel disease; the high blood sugar is the symptom. Diabetes can lead to:

  • Eye problems that can lead to blindness
  • Heart attack
  • Kidney failure
  • Nerve damage
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Stroke
  • Wounds that don’t heal that can lead to amputation

What are the risk factors for blood vessel complications?

Your risk for blood vessel and nerve damage increases if you have unmanaged risk factors like:

  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Lack of exercise
  • Overweight
  • Smoking
  • Stress

What can you do to prevent complications?

  • See your doctor regularly to monitor the risk factors and treat if needed.
  • Stop smoking if you smoke.
  • Get some exercise daily. Any amount is beneficial.
  • Strive to eat healthy most days. That means low fat meats and dairy,  fruits and vegetables and reasonable portions.