The treatment of type 2 diabetes is not just the use of medications. It is an implementation of 4 strategies. The 4 strategies are dietary modifications, regular physical activity, medications (usually insulin), and monitoring blood glucose levels. All four of these pillars work together to keep patients’ blood sugar under control to circumvent or hinder more complications.
How to Combat Type 2 Diabetes
Some patients with type II diabetes can reach their ideal blood sugar levels by incorporating regular exercise into their lives and adopting a healthy, balanced diet. However, a majority of patients also need to use diabetes drugs or insulin.
The appropriate medication is determined by numerous factors, such as blood glucose level and overall health. Your physician may even put together a treatment plan that consists of a combination of medications to get your blood sugar under control.
Common Type 2 Diabetes Medications
Metformin: This drug is typically the initial choice for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. Metformin promotes the proper use of insulin by enhancing the sensitivity of the parts of the body to the hormone. Additionally, it also reduces the liver’s production of blood sugar.
Meglitinides: These drugs work by pushing the pancreas to release more insulin. Though they begin working immediately, their effect isn’t long-lasting.
Sulfonylureas: These drugs such as glyburide and glipizide promote the release of more insulin in the body.
Insulin: Many type 2 diabetes patients require using insulin. Insulin is typically taken via injections. There are numerous insulin types, such as insulin lispro, insulin glulisine, insulin aspart, insulin detemir, insulin glargine, and insulin isophane. All of these drugs improve and control type 2 diabetes symptoms in various ways. You should consult with your doctor to weigh the benefits and disadvantages of different insulin types to determine the ideal choice for your case.
Thiazolidinediones: Similar to metformin, these drugs, such as rosiglitazone, increase sensitivity to insulin in the body. As these medicines can cause weight gain and heighten the risk of heart failure, they aren’t typically used as the first course of therapy.
DPP-4 inhibitors: While they are not too potent, medications such as linagliptin and saxagliptin work by lowering blood glucose levels.
SGLT2 inhibitors: Drugs such as dapagliflozin and canagliflozin are the newest medications available for the treatment of diabetes. These medications block the kidneys from sugar reuptake into the bloodstream.
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