Diabetes Service Dogs

Diabetes affects everyone differently. While some individuals are able to manage their diabetes with relative ease and are in tune to their body’s needs, others may struggle to stay on top of or manage the disease that can be life threatening if not treated properly. When it comes to hypoglycemia (or low blood sugar), some individuals are unaware that their blood sugar is dangerously low. The American Diabetes Association refers to this as hypoglycemia unawareness and it affects people who have had diabetes for a long time and may have frequent low blood glucose episodes (which can make people less likely to sense the early warning signs). If you suffer from frequent bouts of hypoglycemia or have hypoglycemia awareness, have you considered having a dog help you out? Diabetes service dogs are becoming more popular and help to save lives. Here’s some proof:

 

Kristen has Type 1 diabetes and when she was in her early twenties she got a golden retriever puppy, whom she named Montana. One night, when Kristen was sleeping, Montana would not leave her side and was insistent that she wake up. At first, Kristen was annoyed that her dog had disturbed her sleep, but then she thought about checking her blood sugar, which ended up being low. Since the initial incident, Kristen’s four-legged friend wakes her up a few nights a month when he  detects her blood sugar is low and when she tests, he’s always right. Without Montana’s vigilant watch over Kristen, she could easily have an accident, fall into a diabetic coma, or even die.

 

The Job of a Diabetes Service Dog

 

In Kristen’s case, she was fortunate to have Montana by her side. Montana had not been trained to detect low blood sugar, it was just something he picked up on his own, but since the first life saving detection, Kristen does reward him with treats whenever he alerts her that she is hypoglycemic. A dog’s sense of smell is about 100,000 times more accurate than a human’s and even if you find your dog’s keen sense of smell to be annoying at times, it can be a lifesaver.

 

A diabetes service dog is trained to smell the changes in a person’s blood sugar, either too low or too high, through the person’s breath and body odor. Once the dog detects the change, he or she is trained to constantly alert (through pawing, whining, or barking) the individual until the levels return to normal. If the diabetic individual is unresponsive or is not improving, the service dog is trained to seek assistance from someone else.

 

Like other service dogs, a diabetes service dog becomes a constant companion and is always on watch for changes in his or her diabetic companion. Not only can a diabetes service dog save the life of his or her companion, but individuals with diabetes may feel more in control of their diabetes and may feel less afraid to partake in everyday activities such as work, social engagements, and even taking a nap.

FDA Responds to Actos Side Effects Reports, Orders On-going Study

ActosActos is a medication in the class of drugs known as thiazolidinediones (TZD) which help those with Type 2 diabetes regulate glucose levels. Although exercise and a healthy diet can help regulate blood sugar, medication is sometimes the only way some are able to control their diabetes.

Approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1999, Actos (pioglitazone hydrochloride), manufactured by Takeda Pharmaceuticals, has been tied to serious side effects including, bladder cancer, congestive heart failure, and bone fractures. Adverse event reports received by the FDA prompted the federal agency to order a 10 year safety review of the medication.  Meanwhile, adverse events have also prompted litigation as Takeda continues to be named in a growing number of Actos lawsuits filed nationwide.

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Managing Type II Diabetes — Medication Free!

Managing Type II Diabetes

Managing Type II Diabetes

Type II diabetes is a serious health condition that affects millions of individuals living around the world. While type II diabetes was once considered to be associated with those only in their golden years, many adolescents—and even children—have begun to develop the disorder more and more frequently. In most cases, patients who are diagnosed with type II diabetes are encouraged to rely on prescription medications and insulin injections to keep blood sugar levels in check. However, there are a number of other, less invasive techniques that can be just as effective when it comes to the management of this condition. Research shows that regular exercise, a healthy diet, adequate rest, and checking blood sugar levels on a regular basis is highly successful when it comes to the regulation of type II diabetes.

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