About Diabetes

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a group of diseases marked by high levels of blood sugar (blood glucose). If untreated, it can lead to severe complications, including death. However those with diabetes can live a long, healthy life if they take steps to control it. 

How common is it?

United States - 20.8 million Americans have diabetes.

Texas - 940,000 or 8% of persons in Texas have diabetes

McLennan County - 13% of persons in McLennan County have diabetes. The 2013 Community Assessment showed 23% of households have a family member living with diabetes, up from 18.6% in 2010.

How much does diabetes cost taxpayers?

  • U.S - $132 billion annually
    Direct medical costs - $92 billion.
    Indirect costs - $40 billion
  • TX - 9.5 billion

Types of Diabetes

  • Type 1
  • Type 2
  • Gestational Diabetes
  • Pre-diabetes

How can I tell if I am at risk?

  • Age: 45 years or older
  • Genetics: Family history of diabetes (parent or sibling)
  • Race/ethnicity: Being of a minority group
  • Lifestyle: Being overweight, not getting much exercise
  • Health Conditions/Health History: High blood pressure or high cholesterol, diabetes during pregnancy (gestational diabetes), or having a baby weighing more than 9 lbs. at birth

What are some of the signs and symptoms?

  • Frequent urination
  • Fatigue
  • Numbness and tingling of feet
  • Blurred vision
  • Always thirsty
  • Always hungry
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Sores that take a long time to heal
  • Recurring bladder, vaginal, and skin infections
  • Irritability
  • Tingling or loss of feeling in hands or feet
  • Very Dry Skin

How serious is Diabetes?

Diabetes was the 6th leading cause of death in 2002. Every day there are 810 deaths from diabetes complications. If uncontrolled it can lead to:

  • Nerve Damage (neuropathy)
  • Heart and Blood Vessel Disease
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Blindness (retinopathy)
  • Kidney Failure (nephropathy)
  • Foot ulcers
  • Gum disease
  • Depression

Can I prevent Diabetes?

Research shows that losing 5-10% of your body weight and being moderately active 30 minutes for 5 days a week can cut your risk of developing diabetes by 60%.

Order materials:

Texas Department of State Health Services

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases