Type 2 diabetes
One in ten Americans — over 34 million people — has diabetes. Of these, 90% to 95% are diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is a common disease caused by low levels of the hormone insulin. To manage this condition, you need Type 2 diabetes tools so you can monitor your blood sugar levels.
Your pancreas produces the hormone insulin. Insulin controls your blood sugar levels by allowing your cells to take up glucose and use it for energy. Type 2 diabetes happens when your body doesn’t make or use enough insulin.
If you have Type 2 diabetes, you develop insulin resistance. This means your cells can’t respond to insulin or absorb glucose from your bloodstream. Your body starts producing more insulin so your cells get energy.
Your pancreas then becomes overworked and can’t keep up, decreasing your insulin and increasing your blood sugar levels. High blood sugar levels further cause health conditions like heart and kidney problems.
Diagnosis of type 2 diabetes
Your doctor will do a blood test to check if you have Type 2 diabetes. If you have high fasting blood sugar levels, then you likely have Type 2 diabetes.
Managing type 2 diabetes
Your doctor may order an A1c test to monitor your average blood sugar levels over three months. This test can help you manage and control your blood sugar levels. Your doctor may prescribe insulin injections and/or oral medication to control your diabetes.
With your doctor’s support, you’ll have to manage your Type 2 diabetes. Some common steps to manage Type 2 diabetes include:
- Eating healthy
- Staying active
- Taking your medication on time
Maintaining blood sugar levels
Your doctor will tell you what range your blood sugars should be. A typical target range for blood sugar before meals might be between 80 mg/dl (milligrams per deciliter) and 130 mg/dl. Two hours after the start of a meal, your target range may be below 180 mg/dl.
If your blood sugar level is above 180 mg/dl, you have high blood sugar or hyperglycemia. Your doctor will give you instructions about what to do if your blood sugar level is outside of your target range.
Type 2 diabetes tools
The following supplies can help you monitor and control your blood sugar levels and manage your Type 2 diabetes.
1. Blood sugar meter
A blood sugar meter, blood glucose meter, or glucometer is a handy electronic device for blood sugar monitoring.
You'll need a lancet needle to prick your finger and draw a drop of your blood. Then place the drop of blood on the end of a diabetes test strip. When you insert the test strip into the glucometer, it will show your blood sugar level.
2. Continuous glucose monitor
While a glucometer measures your blood sugar at a specific time, a continuous glucose monitor checks your blood sugar levels every 5 minutes. The device has a sensor that measures sugar levels in your tissue fluid throughout the day. It sends this data to a handheld device or an app on your smartphone to continuously keep track of your condition.
3. Insulin syringe, pen, or pump
If you have high blood sugar, your doctor may suggest taking insulin shots. They may prescribe the following types of insulin to maintain your blood sugar levels:
- Rapid or fast-acting. This takes effect within 15 minutes of injection and lasts for 2 to 4 hours.
- Regular or short-acting. This starts working within 30 minutes and is effective for 3 to 6 hours.
- Intermediate-acting. This starts working 2 to 4 hours after injection and continues to work for 12 to 18 hours.
- Long-acting. This takes several hours to start working but lowers blood sugar levels over 24 hours.
These types of insulin are available in different doses across the United States. The commonly used one is U-100, or 100 units of insulin per milliliter of fluid. You may have to take the insulin injection one or more times a day based on your doctor’s advice.
Typically, you can use a syringe to inject insulin into your body. You can also use an insulin pen, which is pre-filled or comes with an insulin cartridge.
Another method of insulin delivery is an insulin pump. It is a small device that is programmed to continuously release short- or rapid-acting insulin into your body. You can attach it to your body using a band or a sock. It has a catheter and needle that will be placed under your skin so it can regularly deliver small doses of insulin similar to your pancreas.
Automated insulin delivery systems are similar to insulin pumps. These systems combine data from your continuous glucose monitor and insulin pump to adjust the dose based on your blood sugar levels.
4. Fast-acting carbohydrates like glucose
While managing Type 2 diabetes, you may experience low blood sugar levels. To avoid complications like fainting or seizures, you'll have to take some fast-acting form of carbohydrate, such as food, drink, or fast-acting tablets made of glucose. Keep glucose tablets, glucose gel, candy, or sweet fruit juice handy to quickly improve your condition.
Along with these supplies, you must maintain your diet and lifestyle. If you experience any complications, talk to your doctor immediately for treatment.
Latest Diabetes News
Daily Health News
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
American Diabetes Association: "Medication & Treatments," "What is a smart insulin pen?"
Beyond Type 2: "DAILY TYPE 2 DIABETES KIT."
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): "Manage Blood Sugar," "Type 2 Diabetes."
diaTribe Learn: "Blood Glucose Meters and Strips," "Continuous Glucose Monitors (CGMs)," "Insulin Pumps."
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: "4 Steps to Manage Your Diabetes for Life."
Top What Supplies Do You Need for Type 2 Diabetes Related Articles
Types of Diabetes Type 2 MedicationsType 2 diabetes oral medications are prescribed to treat type 2 diabetes in conjuction with lifestyle changes like diet and exercise. There are nine classes of drugs approved for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. Examples of type 2 oral diabetes medications include acarbose (Precose), chlorpropamide (Diabinese), glipizide (Glucotrol, Glucotrol XL), and metformin (Glucophage). Side effects, drug interactions, warnings and precautions, dosage, and breastfeeding and pregnancy safety information should be reviewed prior to taking any medication.
Diabetes: Best Diets When You Have DiabetesWhich popular eating plans are safe and effective? The right diet will help you control your blood sugar, get a handle on your weight, and feel better. Learn more from this WebMD quiz.
Diabetes (Type 1 and Type 2)Diabetes is a chronic condition characterized by high levels of sugar (glucose) in the blood. The two types of diabetes are referred to as type 1 (insulin dependent) and type 2 (non-insulin dependent). Symptoms of diabetes include increased urine output, thirst, hunger, and fatigue. Treatment of diabetes depends on the type.
How to Prevent Diabetes NaturallyPrediabetes is a condition in which a person has early symptoms of diabetes, but has not yet fully developed the condition. If prediabetes is not treated with lifestyle changes, the person could develop type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes and prediabetes can be prevented with lifestyle changes, for example, eating a healthy diet, getting more exercise, reducing stress, quitting smoking, reducing or managing blood pressure and cholesterol, and managing any other health conditions or risk factors that you may have for developing type 2 diabetes.
Diabetes QuizTake the Diabetes Quiz and learn the causes, signs, symptoms, and types of this growing epidemic. What does diabetes have to do with obesity and diet? Learn about life as a diabetic.
Diabetes Diet PlansDiscover the best and worst meals for diabetes-savvy dining. See how to avoid carbs and control your blood sugar with healthier meal combinations that retain all the foods and flavors you love.
Diabetes Treatment: Medication, Diet, and Insulin
The major goal in treating diabetes is controlling elevated blood sugar without causing abnormally low levels of blood sugar. Type 1 diabetes is treated with:
- and a diabetic diet.
Type 2 diabetes is first treated with:
- weight reduction,
- a diabetic diet,
- and exercise.
When these measures fail to control the elevated blood sugar, oral medications are used. If oral medications are still insufficient, insulin medications are considered.
Type 2 Diabetes Diet PlanA type 2 diabetes diet or a type 2 diabetic diet is important for blood sugar (glucose) control in people with diabetes to prevent complications of diabetes. There are a variety of type 2 diabetes diet eating plans such as the Mediterranean diet, Paleo diet, ADA Diabetes Diet, and vegetarian diets.Learn about low and high glycemic index foods, what foods to eat, and what foods to avoid if you have type 2 diabetes.
Insulin Pump for DiabetesAn insulin pump is designed to deliver insulin directly to a patient with diabetes. They are about the size of a standard beeper. The pump is attached to under the skin (usually on the abdomen). The amount of insulin required will depend on lifestyle (exercise, sleep patterns, activity level, and diet).
Diabetes: What Raises and Lowers Your Blood Sugar Level?Want to lower your blood sugar? Learn to better control your glucose levels by preventing blood sugar spikes and swings to avoid neuropathy and other diabetes complications. Find foods that lower blood sugar, and identify foods and activities that raise high blood sugar risks.
Type 1 vs. Type 2 Diabetes: Differences
Diabetes mellitus is a metabolic condition in which a person's blood sugar (glucose) levels are too high. Over 29.1 million children and adults in the US have diabetes. Of that, 8.1 million people have diabetes and don't even know it. Type 1 diabetes (insulin-dependent, juvenile) is caused by a problem with insulin production by the pancreas. Type 2 diabetes (non-insulin dependent) is caused by:
Eating a lot of foods and drinking beverages with simple carbohydrates (pizza, white breads, pastas, cereals, pastries, etc.) and simple sugars (donuts, candy, etc.)
- Consuming too many products with artificial sweeteners (We found out that they are bad for us!)
- Lack of activity
While the signs and symptoms of both types of diabetes are the same, which include:
- Increased urination
- Increased hunger
- Increased thirst
- Unexplained weight loss.
However, the treatments are different. Type 1 diabetes is insulin dependent, which means a person with this type of diabetes requires treatment with insulin. People with type 2 diabetes require medication, lifestyle changes like eating a healthy diet, and getting regular exercise.
Type 2 DiabetesType 2 diabetes is a chronic condition that may be reversible with diet and lifestyle changes. Symptoms include excessive thirst, frequent urination, weight loss, fatigue, and an unusual odor to your urine. Most people don't know they have type 2 diabetes until they have a routine blood test. Treatment options include medications, a type 2 diabetes diet, and other lifestyle changes.
Type 2 Diabetes QuizWhat causes type 2 diabetes? Can it be prevented? Take this online quiz and challenge your knowledge of this common condition. Also, get the truth about myths and facts!
Type 2 Diabetes SignsLearn about type 2 diabetes warning signs, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment options. Find out why thirst, headaches, and infections could be signs of diabetes. Discover the treatment options for people with type 2 diabetes, including medicines and lifestyle improvements.
What Are the Early Signs of Diabetes?The early signs of diabetes depend on if one has type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes usually occurs in children, whereas type 2 diabetes is prevalent in adults.
Which is Worse - Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes?Learn about the similarities and differences between Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes.