tomreed_120Each year in November, National Diabetes Month is observed to raise awareness of the disease and encourage individuals to speak with their health care providers about their potential risk.

“It is important that we not limit our focus of diabetes to the month of November, but make a commitment to raise awareness of this ever-growing disease each month of the year,” Congressman Tom Reed said. “Diabetes is very personal to me, as my son lives every day with this disease. I urge everyone to be aware of the risk factors and discuss your individual risk with your health care provider. Diabetes is a serious, potentially debilitating disease, and early detection is the key to treatment.”

“As Vice Chair of the Congressional Diabetes Caucus, our focus is to educate other members in Congress about diabetes and encourage their support of legislation that would improve diabetes research and treatment. I encourage you to visit the caucus  website to read about our goals, supported legislation, diabetes facts and more. I will continue to raise awareness and support for adult and childhood diabetes.”

“I also encourage all to join me in thanking all of our health care providers, caregivers, researchers and advocates who work each day with individuals living with diabetes.”

Nearly 26 million Americans have diabetes and an additional 79 million have prediabetes and are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. The primary risk factors for type 2 diabetes include being overweight, sedentary, over the age of 45 and having a family history of diabetes. The symptoms of diabetes can include frequent urination, unusual thirst, extreme hunger, unusual weight loss, extreme fatigue and irritability, frequent infections, blurred vision, tingling or numbness in the hands or feet, and recurring skin, gum or bladder infections.