Diabetes Risk Factors
While an estimated 21 million people have been diagnosed with diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association, unfortunately, 6 million people (or nearly one-third) are unaware that they have the disease. 16 million Americans have pre-diabetes and likely will develop diabetes within 10 years. The most life-threatening consequences of diabetes are heart disease, stroke and kidney disease. That's why early detection is paramount.
Some risk factors for developing diabetes can be controlled, some cannot. The risk for developing diabetes increases with age. Common risk factors include:
- High blood pressure (pre-hypertension starts at 120/80)
- Family history of diabetes
- Diabetes during pregnancy, or giving birth to a baby weighing more than nine pounds
- Poor diet/nutrition
- Lack of physical activity
Don't Wait for Warning Signs!
Are you concerned that you or a loved one may have a form of diabetes? The American Diabetes Association recommends that adults should have a fasting blood glucose test at age 45. Those with normal results should be re-tested every three years to ensure good health.
Adults and children are susceptible to developing diabetes at any age. Many people with diabetes often fail to notice symptoms. If you notice any of the following symptoms, contact your physician:
- Extreme thirst
- Frequent urination
- Blurred Vision
- Unexplained Weight Loss
- Frequent infections
- Wounds/sores that will not heal
DiabetesAware: Free Online Assessment
Take a free online assessment to see if you're at risk for developing diabetes. For more information, take the DiabetesAware risk assessment.