Diabetes

Tamara Maher, DO -  - Family Medicine Physician

Maher Family Practice

Tamara Maher, DO

Family Medicine Physician located in Los Alamitos, CA

Diabetes is on the increase across the United States, which is worrying because if left untreated, it can cause serious, life-changing complications. Tamara Maher, DO, at Maher Family Practice in Los Alamitos, California, is an experienced family physician who can assess you for diabetes and help you manage the condition should it develop. Call the practice today to find out more about diabetes, or book an appointment online.

Diabetes Q & A

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a condition in which you either don’t produce enough of the hormone insulin or can’t use it effectively, causing your blood glucose levels to rise too high. Your body breaks down carbohydrates in your diet into blood glucose, then uses insulin to transfer the glucose from your blood into your cells. Without insulin this exchange can’t take place, causing serious health problems.

There are two different types of diabetes, type 1 and type 2. Type 1 diabetes most commonly starts in childhood or early adulthood and is due to the body not producing insulin. It’s controlled using insulin therapy and lifestyle management techniques. Type 2 diabetes is far more common than type 1 and is caused when your body is unable to use insulin properly. Type 2 diabetes is a preventable disease that’s fast becoming a global health problem.

What are the symptoms of type 2 diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is a condition that develops slowly, over years in many cases, without you being aware of a problem in the earlier stages. When you do start to notice symptoms, those most often experienced are:

  • Frequent need to urinate
  • Feeling thirstier than normal
  • Feeling hungry more often, even if you’re eating well.
  • Chronic, debilitating fatigue
  • Blurred vision
  • Slow healing of injuries
  • Tingling, pain, or numbness in the extremities

These symptoms are typical of many common health conditions, and people frequently put them down to other causes such as growing older, menopause, or stress, when the problem is your body’s increased inability to manage your blood sugar.

How is diabetes diagnosed?

Diagnosing diabetes is straightforward, and Dr. Maher can take a blood test to determine your blood glucose levels and whether they’re in a healthy range or not. Before you develop type 2 diabetes, you may be prediabetic for some time, which means you have an increased risk of developing diabetes in the future. Regular blood glucose checkups with Dr. Maher ensures any signs of prediabetes are caught early before any complications arise.

What are the complications of having diabetes?

Diabetes can cause serious health problems, including:

  • Skin infections and disorders
  • Eye diseases such as glaucoma and cataracts
  • Diabetic neuropathy, a potentially painful form of nerve damage
  • DKA: Diabetic ketoacidosis (ketone poisoning)
  • Kidney disease
  • Hypertension
  • Stroke

People with diabetes have problems with their circulation that can lead to ulcers and gangrene, and limb amputation is a not infrequent consequence of advanced diabetes.

Dr. Maher can help you avoid these complications by guiding you to make lifestyle changes and ensuring you’re receiving the correct treatment. Book an appointment to see Dr. Maher by calling Maher Family Practice today, or use the online booking tool.