Diabetes Specialist

The Practice of Health and Wellness

Internal Medicine & Functional Medicine Specialists located in Thomaston, CT

Diabetes affects more than 100 million people in the United States. At The Practice of Health and Wellness in Thomaston, Connecticut, Dr. Cipriano has extensive training and experience in helping at-risk individuals avoid developing full-blown diabetes and managing the health of those who already have the disease. Call the office or book an appointment online to learn how you can benefit from expert guidance and care, including diet, exercise, and education.

Diabetes Q&A

What should I know about diabetes?

Diabetes is a long-term metabolic condition diagnosed when your blood sugar (glucose) levels are consistently higher than normal. You have high glucose because your pancreas isn’t producing enough insulin, or your body doesn’t effectively use what is produced.

Insulin moves sugar from the foods you eat out of your bloodstream and into your cells. The cells use glucose for energy to carry out their specific tasks.

The chronic high blood sugar of unmanaged diabetes can damage your organs and blood vessels. Diabetics are at risk of many health complications, including nerve damage, kidney and heart disease, foot problems, and eye issues.

Diabetes can be diagnosed as Type 1, an autoimmune condition that usually shows up in children and teenagers. In Type 1 diabetes, your body’s immune system attacks the cells in your pancreas that produce insulin.

The other major form of diabetes is Type 2. In Type 2 diabetes, your body produces insulin, but you don’t have enough of it to effectively manage your glucose levels.

Type 2 diabetes is caused by poor habits, including less-than-ideal diets and a sedentary lifestyle.

Prediabetes is a condition in which your blood sugar levels are high, but not high enough for a full diabetes diagnosis. A large percentage of people with untreated prediabetes will develop diabetes within 3-5 years.

How do I know if I have diabetes?

A diabetes diagnosis is confirmed using a simple blood test called the A1C test, which measures your glucose levels.

Glucose screenings are usually a standard part of your regular wellness care. The screening is especially important if you have risk factors for diabetes like age, lifestyle habits, or a family history of the disease.

Some people also have noticeable symptoms that indicate diabetes. These symptoms can develop slowly in cases of Type 2 diabetes and prediabetes, so you might not be aware of them:

  • Frequent thirst
  • Increased bathroom visits
  • Blurry vision
  • Tingling in the fingers and toes
  • Fatigue

Those with Type 1 diabetes might also notice unexpected weight loss despite increased hunger.

How is diabetes managed?

The first step in treating diabetes is preventing it in the first place. Pamela Cipriano, DNP, APRN, has done extensive research on preventing prediabetes from turning into Type 2 diabetes. She has successfully reversed prediabetes through diet, exercise, counseling, and education.

People with Type 2 diabetes also benefit from these therapies. They have been able to wean themselves off their diabetic medication. They instead use food as medicine.

The treatment for Type 1 diabetes does include lifestyle changes but also requires taking replacement insulin.

Diabetes isn’t curable, it’s a lifelong condition, but you can minimize its symptoms and live a normal life. Proper treatment also helps you avoid complications.

For comprehensive diabetes support and care, set up an appointment at The Practice of Health and Wellness. Call the practice today or book online.