November is Diabetes Awareness Month Insulin is not a cure - it's life support

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Type 1 Diabetes patient Collin Hardy of Meridian, 8.

At the age of 3, three weeks before his 4th birthday, Collin Hardy of Meridian was diagnosed with diabetes.

The signs and symptoms that his mother noticed in the beginning were frequent urination, extreme thirst, very lethargic and a lot of sweating. She said his breath gave off a “fruity” smell which is a common sign of a high blood sugar, almost similar to the gum, Juicy Fruit.

Collin is now 8 years old and has had Type 1 Diabetes for 4.5 years. He is aware of his diagnosis and he excels in education regarding diabetes. Collin knows how to give his daily doses of insulin. He is now on an insulin pump and has done great wonders while being on the pump. Diabetes has not stopped Collin from enjoying life. He enjoys playing football for Northeast Trojans Pee-Wee team and basketball with his brother. He is very creative and loves to paint, draw and work on puzzles. One special thing about Collin is that he is a fantastic singer and his favorite artist is Ed Sheeran.

Collin’s mom, Brandy says, “It can become a struggle and we have days where we wish we didn’t have to prick his finger or be excluded from sweets with having this disease, I constantly remind him to pray, because it could be worse. Daily, I remind Collin this special scripture, Philippians 4:13 which states, ‘I can do all things through Christ which strengthen me.’”

November is Diabetes Awareness Month. It is a time to increase our awareness about a serious disease that can lead to potentially life-threatening complications such as heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, blindness, and amputation. While there are no known measures to prevent Type 1 Diabetes, many people with Type 2 Diabetes can prevent or delay developing the disease by eating healthy, exercising, and maintaining a healthy weight.

Early detection of the disease can also decrease the chances of developing associated complications. Symptoms include frequent urination, excessive thirst, unexplained weight loss, extreme hunger, blurry vision, tingling or numbness in the hands or feet, and fatigue. Individuals with a family history of diabetes, are overweight, live a sedentary lifestyle, are over the age of 40, and are of African American, Hispanic, American Indian, or Asian American descent are at an increased risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes.

The Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi is the state’s only nonprofit health organization working to prevent diabetes and associated complications as well as to improve the lives of every child, every adult and every family touched by Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes. This is accomplished through education, medical assistance, support, advocacy and research. Every dollar raised by the DFM stays in the state to fight diabetes each day.

These donations help fund a variety of programs including advocacy for the rights of children in our school system with the help of our sweet subject program and emergency boxes; Camp Kandu, the only diabetes camp in the state for children with diabetes and their families; and Helping Hands, patient assistance program that helps Mississippians in need with diabetes medicine and supplies, along with many others.

For more information on diabetes or our foundation, contact 601-957-7878, visit www.msdiabetes.org or find us on Facebook.

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