Although diabetes can cause serious issues in the workplace, many disability insurance companies still look for reasons to delay or deny legitimate disability claims. Having proper documentation of diabetes as well as appropriate care and treatment can help make sure that your disability benefits are approved in a quick and timely manner.
Diabetes mellitus, commonly referred to as simply diabetes, represents a group of diseases that in some way affect the use of glucose in your blood and body, or your blood sugar. Glucose is an essential source of energy for the cells in your body as well as being the brain’s main source of “fuel”. Regardless of the specific type of diabetes that you have, diabetes means that you blood sugar is too high. The different types of diabetes simply point to the reason that your blood sugar is too high. The types of diabetes are:
- Chronic Diabetes: within the category of chronic diabetes, there are two types, type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes can develop at any age, but most commonly develops in childhood or adolescence. Type 1 diabetes is also not preventable. Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes. Type 2 can develop at any age, but it is preventable.
- Prediabetes: this type of diabetes describes a case where your blood sugar is elevated above normal levels, but it is not high enough to be diabetes. Without treatment or some type of change, prediabetes can easily lead to type 2 diabetes. Unlike chronic diabetes, prediabetes is potentially reversible.
- Gestational diabetes: this type of diabetes is found in pregnant women and develops during the pregnancy. In most cases, gestational diabetes may resolve itself when the baby is delivered.
Prediabetes and early stage 2 diabetes may not cause any noticeable symptoms. Common symptoms for type 1 diabetes and for type 2 diabetes later in the condition’s life span include:
- Unexplained and unintended weight loss
- Extreme thirst
- Frequent urination
- High blood pressure
If you are pregnant and are worried about gestational diabetes, your doctor will do routine blood work that will determine whether or not your blood glucose levels are abnormally high.
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommends that anyone with a body mass index above 25, regardless of age, receives a test for diabetes. The ADA also suggests that anyone over the age of 45 should receive at least an initial test for diabetes. The most common and effective test to determine if you have type 1, type 2, or prediabetes is called the glycated hemoglobin (A1C) test. This specific test measures your average blood sugar levels for the prior two to three months. If your A1C level is higher than 6.5 percent on two independent tests, it indicates that you have diabetes. To determine whether you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, doctors will test for the presence of ketones. If ketones are found, it indicates that you have type 1 diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes is caused by a lack of insulin in your blood due to a malfunction in your immune system. Insulin in a chemical secreted by your pancreas that lowers the glucose levels in your blood. When there is not insulin to control your blood glucose levels, type 1 diabetes develops. Type 2 diabetes develops when your cells become resistant to insulin, not allowing the chemical to lower the levels of glucose in your blood as it should. Being overweight is highly associated with type 2 diabetes, but not everyone with type 2 diabetes is overweight. Gestational diabetes is caused by an imbalance of hormones in your body due to the hormones that the placenta produces. Generally, your pancreas is able to adjust to these new levels of hormones, but when it does not adjust correctly, it leads to gestational diabetes.
Treatment for diabetes generally depends on the type of diabetes you have. That being said, a patient with any type of diabetes can benefit from a healthier lifestyle achieved by eating a healthy diet and regular exercise. For chronic diabetes (type 1 or type 2), you need to constantly monitor the level of blood sugar and insulin in your blood regularly. Most people with type 1, and some patients with type 2 diabetes, have to control their insulin levels through insulin therapy. Insulin is injected into the bloodstream using a needle or automatic insulin pump. A constant monitoring of insulin levels is crucial to treating type 1 and some cases of type 2 diabetes. For some cases of type 1, a pancreas transplant can also be an option for treating the condition.
If you have diabetes and you are considering filing a claim for disability benefits, or have already been denied disability benefits by your insurance company, our firm can help. Sign up below for a free consultation or call our offices toll-free at 1-855-828-4100.