Access to Diabetes Care: If Not Now, When?
It's World Diabetes Day! 1...
Will I get diabetes when I am getting older?
It is possible!
In fact, diabetes is a common health condition in the ageing population. 1
According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), diabetes is a common health condition in the ageing population, and over one-quarter of adults > 65 years old suffer from diabetes and half of the older population have pre-diabetes. 1
The older diabetic population can be very diverse, in regards to its race/ethnicity, duration of diabetes, medical conditions, and functional status, which can complicate the treatment and care for this population. 2
Let's understand more about diabetes!
Pre-diabetes is when the blood sugar levels are higher than normal range but not high enough to be categorized as diabetes. 3
Diabetes is when the blood sugar levels are too high. There are 2 main types of diabetes which are Type 1 diabetes and Type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes in middle-aged and older adults. 3
Know your blood sugar levels now! 4,5
If you find any difficulties in understanding blood sugar levels, TALK TO YOUR DOCTOR!
Fasting blood glucose test is a blood test in which the blood sample is taken, with the requirement of overnight fasting. 5 It is normally done after at least 8 hours of fasting and hence, usually taken in the morning. 6
Random blood glucose test is a blood test in which the blood sample is taken randomly. No fasting is required. 5
HbA1c test is a blood test in which the blood sample is taken to measure the average blood glucose levels over the past three months. It does not require fasting. It can show how much blood sugar is bound to haemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying protein in red blood cells. 5
What are some common elderly syndromes that are associated with diabetes?
In general, older adults may be experiencing some of the following age-related conditions, which may affect their abilities to self-manage their diabetes. 1
Whether or not you are having diabetes, you are RECOMMENDED to have an annual screening on your cognitive function. If you have cognitive impairment, which affects your ability to remember, learn or concentrate, it could affect your ability on self-managing your diabetes! 1,7
Did you know that older women with diabetes are more vulnerable to injurious falls? The increased risk of falls is associated with higher rates of fractures. Treatment with insulin was associated with 2 times greater risk of foot fracture, likely because insulin treatment indicated more advanced diabetes. 2
Do you take several types of medications daily? If you are, check if you are taking the right medicine at the right time and dosage. For example, you are given multiple medications for diabetic control and other health conditions. 2 It may be hard for you to remember which medicine is for which health condition, hence, talk to your doctor if you have any problems with the medicine. Remember, be compliant to your medications!
What are some health tips for older adults?
Healthy Eating Habits
Do you like to eat fast food? Have you ever tried brown rice? For a healthy eating habit, try foods like brown rice and whole-grain bread, as well as vegetables and selected fruits that are rich in nutrients and low glycemic index. Eat LESS packaged foods and LIMIT your salt, sugar and fat intake too! 8
Do not forget to exercise while maintaining a healthy diet. Studies show that doing physical activities at least 3 times a week can improve our health! Activities such as brisk walking or bike riding, gardening, yoga, tai chi and chair aerobics are some of the options for you. 8
What is the relationship between diabetic elderly and COVID-19?
Older adults, especially those having type 1 or type 2 diabetes are more likely becoming severely ill from COVID-19. 3
Inform your doctor immediately if you SUSPECT of being exposed to COVID-19! 3
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-This article is supported by MSD-
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