I Know I am Early, but
Next month, November is National Diabetes Awareness Month. There is so much misinformation about the diseases, yes diseases, that even doctors get it wrong many times. News shows, TV and Radio ads, internet ads (claiming a cure), all perpetuate the general public’s perception of Diabetes. There are 3 main types of diabetes, Type 1, Type 2, and Gestational. Type 1 and Type 2 have different “sub-categories”, usually describing progression and onset of the disease. There have been different names for Type 1 and Type 2 that probably helped to keep wrong ideas alive in the public. Remember Juvenile, and Insulin dependent, adult onset and other names? When I tell people that I have diabetes, I usually get a comment like “You are not overweight”, or something other misconceived idea of what diabetes is. Even my new doctor seemed surprised when I told him I was T1, and was diagnosed at 50.
World Diabetes Day, sponsored by International Diabetes Federation, is Nov 14. I encourage you to support the cause and wear Blue that day. To find out more visit their site at World Diabetes Day.
There will be many activities next month, if you can show your support and attend an event, spend a few minutes to learn facts about diabetes, if you know real facts, share with someone who may not. As individuals we can all help to change general perceptions. Read about what 1 person did at his blog diabetesdad.org and his post “The Worst Kind of Diabetes is…”
I can’t say it better than Diabetesdad, ” If we don’t try to correct the problem, we cannot complain when they get it wrong. Should you do it, send me a response to let me know the name of the newspaper and in what city and state. This is an easy one, but one that can surely have an impact….let’s do it together. ‘Don’t do nothing’…….and do it today.”
Here are some statistics from the American Diabetes Association:
New Cases: 1.9 million new cases of diabetes are diagnosed in people aged 20 years and older in 2010.
* In contrast to the 2007 National Diabetes Fact Sheet, which used fasting glucose data to estimate undiagnosed diabetes and prediabetes, the 2011 National Diabetes Fact Sheet uses both fasting glucose and A1C levels to derive estimates for undiagnosed diabetes and prediabetes. These tests were chosen because they are most frequently used in clinical practice.
Under 20 years of age
- 215,000, or 0.26% of all people in this age group have diabetes
- About 1 in every 400 children and adolescents has diabetes
Age 20 years or older
- 25.6 million, or 11.3% of all people in this age group have diabetes
Age 65 years or older
- 10.9 million, or 26.9% of all people in this age group have diabetes
- 13.0 million, or 11.8% of all men aged 20 years or older have diabetes
- 12.6 million, or 10.8% of all women aged 20 years or older have diabetes
I believe the stats above include all types of diabetes, but still staggering. It has also been reported that about 5% of all the people with diabetes are Type 1. A reasonable person would think that general public knowledge would be better informed when close to 1 of every 10 people deal with diabetes daily. And the number of new cases is increasing, according to American Diabetes Association in their article “Diabetes Rates Increase Significantly Among American Youth” This is just too much to not get facts correct. Too much not to see changes are needed.
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