Diabetes

Dr. Van Tran Family Practice

Family Medicine located in Houston, TX

It’s estimated that more than 9% of Americans have diabetes. Of those, about 95% have Type 2 diabetes. Whether you have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, the team at Dr. Van Tran Family Practice works with you, developing a tailor-made treatment plan to manage your blood sugar and avoid health problems. If you have questions about diabetes, call the office in Houston or book an appointment online.

Diabetes Q & A

Dr. Van Tran Family Practice

What is the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes?

Both types of diabetes develop due to a problem with insulin that allows blood sugar to get too high. With Type 1 diabetes, an autoimmune disorder damages cells in your pancreas so you can’t produce insulin.

Patients with Type 2 diabetes do produce insulin, but not enough. They also develop insulin resistance, so their body can’t use the insulin that’s produced.

Type 1 diabetes is usually diagnosed before the age of 14, while Type 2 diabetes is typically diagnosed in adults over the age of 45. However, both types can be diagnosed at any age.

What health complications are caused by diabetes?

Over time, high blood sugar damages small blood vessels. This damage then leads to serious health problems such as:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Nerve damage
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Vision loss
  • Skin infections
  • Foot ulcers that won’t heal

Type 2 diabetes is one of the top two causes of kidney failure, and it doubles the risk of dying from heart disease.

What symptoms develop when I have diabetes?

Symptoms occur quickly if you have Type 1 diabetes. By comparison, Type 2 diabetes silently develops for years before symptoms finally appear.

Both types of diabetes can cause:

  • Increased thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Blurry vision
  • Increased hunger
  • Fatigue
  • Sores that are slow to heal
  • Unexplained weight loss

You can’t prevent Type 1 diabetes, but you may be able to reduce your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes by eating a healthy diet, exercising, and losing weight, if needed.

How is diabetes managed?

Once you develop diabetes, it can’t be cured, so treatment focuses on keeping your blood sugar in a normal range. Dr. Tran develops a customized treatment plan that includes:

Dietary and lifestyle changes

Everyone with diabetes needs to watch the amount and type of carbohydrates they consume to prevent spikes in blood sugar caused by carbs. Regular exercise also helps lower blood sugar.

Medication

Patients with Type 1 diabetes must take insulin. If you have Type 2 diabetes, and diet doesn’t keep your blood sugar under control, you may need insulin or another type of medication that helps lower blood sugar.

Dr. Tran believes your medications should always be within your budget, so he helps out with samples or money-saving coupons. If you take several medications, he can prescribe a combination pill that contains all your meds in one pill.

Since it’s so important to run blood work to check your hemoglobin A1C, he also offers very affordable lab fees for patients who don’t have insurance.

If you develop symptoms of diabetes, call Dr. Van Tran Family Practice or book an appointment online.