What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is a disease in which blood glucose levels are above normal. Most of the food we eat is turned into glucose, or sugar, for our bodies to use for energy. The pancreas, an organ that lies near the stomach, makes a hormone called insulin to help glucose get into the cells of our bodies. When you have diabetes, your body either doesn't make enough insulin or can't use its own insulin as well as it should. This causes sugar to build up in your blood.
Diabetes can cause serious health complications including heart disease, blindness, kidney failure, and lower-extremity amputations. Diabetes is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States.
EIPHD is committted to
reduce the burden of diabetes by buidling community partnerships to promote Clinical Practice Guidelines for diabetes prevention and treatment based on science and evidence-based research, promote media campaigns, and participation in community-based programs and events. We are committed to:
- Increasing the awareness of diabetes.
- Increasing the number of people with diabetes receiving flu and pnemonia vaccines.
- Increasing the percentage of people with diabetes who received recommended foot exams.
- Partnering with other organizations to promote diabetes awarenss and education.
- Promoting the importance of HgA1c testing for people with diabetes.
- Promoting the importance of regular blood pressure checks for people with diabetes.
- Promoting the importance of regular cholesterol level testing for people with diabetes.
Diabetes can cause eye problems and may lead to blindness. People with diabetes have a higher risk of blindness than people without diabetes. Early detection and treatment of eye problems can save your sight.
It is important to see your eye professional at least once a year for a dilated eye exam. Only optometrists and ophthalmologists can detect the signs of retinopathy, which is damage to the blood vessels in the back of the eye. Only ophthalmologists can treat retinopathy.
People who have diabetes are vulnerable to nerve and vascular damage that can result in loss of protective sensation in the feet, poor circulation, and poor healing of foot ulcers.
All of these conditions contribute to the high amputation rate in people with diabetes, but early identification of foot problems and early intervention to prevent problems from worsening can avert many amputations.
It is recommended that people who have diabetes have their feet examined at least once a year by a trained health care professional.
Eastern Idaho Chronic Disease Partnership
The Eastern Idaho Chronic Disease Partnership is a group of healthcare professionals who main focus is reducing the burden of chronic diseases on individuals, families and the community. The Partnership meets every other month and sponsors both professional development and community-based events. If you or anyone you know is interested in participating in this group, please contact Timalee Geisler (208) 533-3149.
For More Information
For more information about diabetes or the Diabetes Prevention and Control Program at Eastern Idaho Public Health District, please contact:
Timalee Geisler, MHE
Diabetes Prevention and Control Program Coordinator
Eastern Idaho Public Health District
1250 Hollipark Drive
Idaho Falls, ID 83401
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