The important piece you may be missing
You’re living with Diabetes. You take every measure to keep it under control. You’re eating well, exercising, and you’re visiting your primary care provider (PCP) on a regular basis. So what more is there to make sure you’re staying as healthy as you can while living with this disease? The missing piece to this puzzle is something you may not have realized. Staying up-to-date with your vaccinations is a crucial part of staying healthy.
Why are vaccinations important if I have Diabetes?
The amount of diseases that can be prevented in the U.S. each year is staggering. If you’re living with this disease, the risk of getting certain other diseases is heightened because the immune system may not be up to the task of fighting it off. Diseases that could have been prevented by vaccinations may lead to higher risks of serious problems, including severe complications and possibly death for people with Diabetes. When you are sick, it makes it difficult to control your blood sugar levels, often because you don’t feel like eating anything, which can cause levels to plummet. Vaccines help protect your health and typically have mild side effects. Severe side effects have been shown to be very rare.
A higher risk of hepatitis B is associated with people living with Diabetes compared to the rest of the population. Don’t take the risk – consult your PCP if you haven’t already.
What vaccines do I need if I have Diabetes?
The main vaccines suggested for people living with Diabetes are:
- Influenza (Flu) Vaccine
- Pneumococcal Vaccine
- Tdap Vaccine
- Zoster Vaccine
- Hepatitis B Vaccine
Is there a vaccine for Type 1 Diabetes?
A possible “cure” for Type 1 Diabetes has been circulating the web in recent months. The article originated from nature.com in a section called “NPJ Vaccines”. Researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital studied nine people with Type 1 Diabetes who were given the common tuberculosis vaccine. According to the research, there was a substantial reduction in their HbA1c used to diagnose Diabetes in patients. There was a 10% reduction after three years and an 18% reduction after a four year period. The subjects of this research were studied for eight years total and retained most of the reduction.
While there are skeptics from other medical researchers, this could be a path to finding a cure.
Where do I start?
Talk with your primary care provider (PCP) about other vaccines that may be helpful if you’re living with Diabetes to get the best protection against preventable diseases. If you do not have a PCP, give us a call at 336-694-9331 to set up an appointment with one of our great providers. We’re here to help!