The Day It All Began….

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I always find myself curious to hear other diabetics stories discussing thing’s like; where they were when they found out, what symptoms they experiencing, if they didn’t notice any of the symptoms, what finally happened that made them aware of the disease… etc. Many people don’t enjoy going to the doctors office for every little thing that is wrong unless you are a hypochondriac. Some of the symptoms; increased thirst, weight loss and feeling tired aren’t things we would freak out about after a week and then make an appointment to see a doctor. Because of this there are some pretty scary stories out there about people who were driving their car and suddenly ran off the road into a ditch after passing out or swerving into oncoming traffic.

As we all know diabetes is hereditary to if you are someone in your family is a diabetic you have an increased chance of not only getting the disease yourself but having a family member that might someday become diabetic. Hearing other peoples stories will help you notice some of the symptoms that people experience and possibly alert yourself or the other person to see a doctor before things get too bad. There was a story back in April where an 8-year-old girl died suddenly and after all her organs started to fail. Doctor’s said her sugar level was 1,700 after she was brought into the hospital( Full Story). Most people if you think about it will let those around them know when they are experiencing the smallest problems. Think about the last time you heard someone say; “my finger hurts” or “I have a headache”. Hopefully after reading this this you will be on the lookout for common symptoms (listed below) in those around you. Researchers have calculated that about 6.3 million adults — about a fourth of the people in the U.S. with diabetes — have the disease but haven’t been diagnosed.

My Personal Experience

When I was about 16-years-old I was pretty healthy, probably around 6’1″ tall and about 180 lbs – Complete chick magnet!. One day while in school I noticed focusing on the teacher from the back of the classroom was becoming difficult because one of my eyes kept getting blurry. This symptom would come and go, looking back it probably got worse after lunch or after eating something because of my sugar levels being on the rise which causes pressure change in the eyes. After a few days of blurred vision and hoping it would pass I started noticing other symptoms occurring. My mouth became bone dry so I was drinking ridiculous amount of water all the time, I had even brought a large jug of water into work for a few days because otherwise I would be making trips to the water fountain close to 6,000 time an hour…. No really I am serious!

Drinking all of that water was definitely taking it’s toll on my bladder for sure! I was experiencing “frequent urination” as well, going to the bathroom about 20 times a day or more. I remember during all of this I was hanging out with a girl that lived about 45 minutes away at the time and I can remember only staying there for a couple hours at most because of my frequent trips to the bathroom. After my 3rd trip I would usually pull the whole “man I am really tired I should get going so I can get some sleep”. Even though I just went before I left I would usually have to stop at least once on the way home as well. After about a week and a half of these symptoms I knew things were getting worse instead of better and needed to see a doctor.

After school on a Friday afternoon I had an appointment to see my doctor to discuss what has been going on. She came in the room, spoke with me for a few minutes about my symptoms, pricked my finger and then left the room for about 20 minutes. At this point I started worrying because I had no idea what was so important that she couldn’t wait until after I left unless it pertained to me. Well come to find out I was exactly right, she came in and told me I had a blood glucose level way above normal and she wanted me to go home and wait for my mother who she had just contacted at work to see if she could leave early. She asked me if I was OK to drive home and I responded with “yes of course why wouldn’t I be?” I had no idea what any of this meant or what diabetes even was at this point.

I went home and sat there for about 30 minutes waiting for my mom to arrive, I grabbed a magazine just in case I was there for a couple hours and as soon as she arrived we were on our way. I was immediately brought into a room and was informed I wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon. I was in for a pretty big surprise, I really thought I would be in and out in a couple of hours. I was asked a million questions, had an IV hooked up, and was being fed hospital food on calorie intake of a 3 year old. About 2 days later after learning about the disease, how to count carbs and inject insulin I was finally on my way home.

Here I am about 10 years later and very healthy, now using an insulin pump with humalog instead of the syringes or insulin pens I have tried in the past. I have an average A1c of 5.7 and test usually about 10 times a day. I notice way too many changes in my body if my sugar levels go outside of the normal zone in either direction. Because of this I have become very anal about keeping my levels in the normal zone. I do have occasional highs and lows but they do not stay there long at all. After being diagnosed I matured pretty quickly and learned how serious this disease can be if it is not taken care of correctly. Now it’s all second nature for the most part, I don’t even think about the things I do on a daily basis. I try to exercise at least 5 days a week and continue to eat healthy throughout the day to make sure I live a long healthy life.

Below is an image which shows the risk of type 1 diabetes if another family member has it.

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Type 1 Diabetes Symptoms

* Frequent urination
* Excessive thirst
* Extreme hunger
* Unusual weight loss
* Increased fatigue
* Irritability
* Blurry vision

Type 2 Diabetes Symptoms

* Blurry vision
* Cuts or sores that are slow to heal
* Itchy skin, yeast infections
* Increased thirst
* Dry mouth
* Need to urinate often
* Leg pain

Feel free to share your story in the comment section below!

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