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November is the official diabetes awareness month in several countries including the United States. The American Diabetes Association is collaborating with members of the Health Department in an effort to raise awareness of diabetes through a campaign due to take place throughout the month of November.
Diabetes is a rising health concern for a large segment of the population in the United Stated. According to statistics over 29.1 million Americans suffered from diabetes in 2012 and specialists say the number has been rising since. Out of those 1.25 million Americans had been diagnosed with diabetes type 1, which is the more severe form of the disease. The number was equivalent to 9.3 percent of the total population.
And the statistics haven’t improved since, considering that the disease poses a growing health concern for Americans of all ages. Recent studies show that a total of 79 million people are currently at risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The number of cases recorded world-wide is also on the rise with a recent survey showing that 415 million adults worldwide suffer from the disease.
The American Diabetes Association is working alongside Health Department representatives in order to increase the general public’s awareness when it comes to the risk factors as well as the symptoms associated with the disease. The organizations are also trying to educate people on the life-threatening complications that can be brought on by the disease, including but not limited to heart disease, blindness, stroke, amputation and kidney disease.
Due to the particularities of the disease, many cases of diabetes go undiagnosed. A study on diabetes in the United States published in 2014 by the National Diabetes Statistics Report states that from the 29.1 million cases of diabetes in the country, 8.1 million went undiagnosed. This is mostly due to the fact that many people with diabetes type 2 do not experience symptoms of the disease.
An increased blood sugar level, the primary indicator of the onset of diabetes, does not manifest symptomatically so cases if type 2 diabetes can go undiagnosed for years due to the lack of noticeable symptoms. The American Diabetes Association is also trying to raise awareness about the risk factors that can expose people to diabetes and the importance of undergoing a screening through a health care provider in order to diagnose the illness.
Common symptoms of diabetes include a constant feeling of hunger and fatigue, unusual thirstiness and involuntary loss of weight, blurred vision or frequent infections. People experiencing these symptoms are advised to get screened for the disease.
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