Type 2 diabetes affects both men and women equally, though it can be slightly different for women. It is different based on what occurs when a woman is in a certain stage of her life. Here is what you should know about diabetes in women and the different life stages she goes through.
The first stage of life where you need to be concerned with diabetes is early life. This is typical during adolescent years between pre-teen and teenage years. Type 1 diabetes is something you are born with, but it rarely shows itself before you are about ten years old. You can also get type 2 diabetes during your teens, often from a genetic risk, obesity, and many other factors. Getting diabetes at this young age creates more complications for things like diabetic eye disease, so you or your teenager must stick to the diet laid out to you by your doctor.
The next life stage for women is early adulthood, ranging between 18 or 19 years old up to your early 40s. During this time, it is known as your reproductive life stage, where you can get pregnant and start a family. Many women around this age have diabetes and don’t realize it, or get pregnant and are diagnosed with gestational diabetes. Some adolescents have type 1 diabetes are not diagnosed with it until they reach this age, but type 2 diabetes tends to be a little more common during early adulthood.
The next life stage is when you get to the middle-aged years, between around 45 years old until your early 60s. This is when there is an increase in women who are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. This form of diabetes does tend to be more common with older women, so if you are a middle-aged woman in the United States, you are at a considerably higher risk. Women of this age with diabetes also have a higher risk of developing heart disease, so don’t go too long before getting tested and having a treatment plan by your doctor.
Lastly, there are senior women who are 65 years or older. It is very common in women of this age, plus the side effects and potential complications of diabetes get higher for women of this age. You need to be concerned about heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, and diabetes symptoms like nerve damage and vision loss.
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