People at risk for diabetes and their family and friends can be actively involved in ensuring that diabetes is diagnosed early. Individuals may be able to recognize diabetes symptoms for themselves, or a friend or family member may recognize these symptoms in a loved one and encourage that person to get tested for diabetes. The following are some steps that can help to identify people at risk for diabetes:
- Take a self-administered type 2 diabetes risk assessment test (see Appendix D) to determine individual risk for diabetes and important next steps. Discuss the results with a health care provider.
- Pregnant women should ask their health care provider if a diabetes test is needed.
- Individuals with pre-diabetes should work with their health care provider to develop a plan to help delay or prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes. Even if blood glucose levels do not indicate diabetes, pre-diabetes is a risk factor for developing diabetes. Losing a small amount of weight by eating a healthier diet and getting regular exercise may prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes.
- Encourage family members and friends with diabetes symptoms to seek medical help. Talk with a health care provider or local office of the American Diabetes Association to learn how to support someone who may be at risk for diabetes.