Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes
Chances are that you have picked up this book because you or someone you love has just been diagnosed with diabetes or has had diabetes for a while and you are trying to understand the disease and how to take care of it. Like all medical conditions you may ﬁ nd the language, medicines, and treatment recommendations complicated and confusing. You may also have heard that diabetes can cause blindness, nerve damage, or kidney failure, and you may be fearful that this could happen to you. It is true that these complications can occur if the diabetes is untreated or poorly con- trolled. With good care, however, all of these complications can be prevented.
The goal of this book is to demystify diabetes and give you a clear picture of what it is and how it is treated. Living with diabetes can be challenging. It demands your attention several times a day, and you cannot ignore it for long. You have to acquire a new set of skills—learning to adjust medicines, diet, and physical activ- ity. For individuals who are very organized, the adjustments demanded by diabe- tes are easily incorporated into their routines. For others, the diabetes can become a straightjacket, but it does not have to be this way—there is a lot that you can do to make your diabetes manageable. This book describes how you can acquire the skills necessary to incorporate diabetes care into your daily life without feeling overwhelmed.
It may seem hard to believe, but there can be some positive aspects to a diagnosis of diabetes. First, unlike many other chronic illnesses, you can be in charge and you can control it. Second, the organizational skills and discipline that you develop car- ing for your diabetes can be successfully transferred to other aspects of your life. Third, once you have diabetes, you (and your doctor) will pay more attention to your health and you may in fact live longer and healthier.
There are a lot of myths and misconceptions about diabetes such as “if you have diabetes, you cannot eat sweets” or “only kids get type 1 diabetes.” It is my hope that this book will dispel such myths and misconceptions and that you will come away with the knowledge and skills to take the very best care of your diabetes.
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