Frequently Asked Questions About Diabetes

Reviewed by: HU Medical Review Board | Last reviewed: February 2021.

Whether you are newly diagnosed or have been living with diabetes for years, you are likely to have questions about how to best care for yourself. Here are some of the most common questions related to diabetes that come up in the community.

How do I know if I need medicine to manage my type 2 diabetes?

Whether or not you need medicine to control your diabetes is as unique as you are. Things your doctor will consider when prescribing your treatments include your:1

  • A1C numbers
  • Home blood glucose reports
  • Weight
  • Blood pressure
  • Cholesterol
  • Risk of hypoglycemia
  • Potential side effects
  • Costs
  • Personal preferences

What are the different ways to check my blood sugar?

Regularly checking your blood glucose levels is a necessary part of managing diabetes. Your doctor will check your blood glucose regularly using an A1C test. This blood test measures how well your blood glucose is managed long-term. How often you get the test depends on how well your diabetes is controlled.1

At home, you can check your blood glucose using a glucometer (blood glucose meter) or a continuous glucose monitor. To do this, you will prick your finger with a lancet (also called a sharp) and drop a tiny amount of blood on a test strip. This test strip is inserted into the glucometer. You get results in a few seconds. Your doctor will recommend how often you should check your blood sugar levels at home.2

How often should I check my blood sugar?

How often you should check your blood sugar can be very different from person to person. It can also change if you are sick with a cold or flu, if you develop multiple health conditions, or as you lose or gain weight. The type of drugs and insulin you use to control your type 2 diabetes can also affect how often you need to check your blood sugar.2

What type of specialists can help me manage my diabetes?

A variety of medical professionals help people with diabetes manage their disease, including:

Where can I find help paying for my insulin and other diabetes meds?

One big concern for many persons with diabetes is finding the means for managing their condition on limited resources and limited income. Managing type 2 diabetes is expensive. Costs include drugs, blood sugar testing machines and supplies, doctor visits, and lab work.3

If you live in the United States, health insurance is especially complex and expensive. Being well informed about your options will help you and your family get the health services and financial protection you need.

How does losing weight help my T2D?

Studies show that losing just 5 percent to 10 percent of your body weight results in major health benefits in people with type 2 diabetes. People who lose weight also lower their blood glucose, blood pressure, and blood cholesterol.1

How does counting carbs help me manage my diabetes?

Counting the number of carbohydrates you eat helps keep your blood sugar levels from getting too high or too low. Keeping your blood sugar levels balanced helps you prevent or delay serious long-term problems with your kidneys, nerves, and eyes. Short-term, blood sugar control keeps from you from having serious complications.4

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