The Richmond Register

October 22, 2013

Diabetes and family support

By Gina Noe
Extension Agent

RICHMOND — Diabetes affects nearly 26 million Americans and an estimated 79 million people are at risk for developing the disease. In Madison County, diabetes affects more than 8 percent of our population, or about 6,700 people. (Kyhealthfacts.org)

For people living with diabetes or at risk for type 2 diabetes, family support is critical to saying healthy.

In observance of National Diabetes Month 2013, the National Diabetes Education Program has chosen Diabetes is a Family Affair as the theme for this year’s efforts to promote diabetes awareness.

Diabetes is a challenging disease that affects the entire family in many ways. For people with diabetes and their families, it is important to work together to manage diabetes and prevent serious health problems such as heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney disease, and nerve damage that can lead to amputation. People with diabetes who have a strong family support system are better able to cope with the day-to-day challenges associated with the disease.

It is also important to know that having a family history of diabetes, such as a mother, father, brother or sister with type 2 diabetes, puts you at greater risk for developing type 2 diabetes. The good news is that you, and your family, can take small, but important steps to delay or prevent Type 2 Diabetes.

If you would like more information about diabetes, sign up for Diabetes 101 to be held at the Madison County Extension Education Center on Thursday, November 7 at noon. This will be the first in this year’s Hot Women and Health Series. Dr. Tamea Evans will be discussing symptoms, risk factors, complications and treatment of diabetes. The lunch and learn is free, but registration is required by Tuesday, November 5. Call 859-623-4072 to sign up.

The tenth annual Madison County Diabetes Day will be held on November 9 from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the First Christian Church in Richmond.

Bring your family and friends to learn more about Diabetes, receive free health services and enter for prizes. Free health screenings provided will include glucose, cholesterol, kidney function, diabetic food exams, blood pressure, balance screenings, and body mass index. Call 859-582-2116 for more information.

Educational programs of the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service serve all people regardless of race, color, age, sex, religion, disability or national origin.