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Your Healthy Family: Diabetes Awareness Month - A Type 1 Diagnosis

Posted at 11:08 AM, Nov 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-07 13:08:09-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — November is Diabetes Awareness Month, and there's a free Community Diabetes Expo happening this Saturday in Colorado Springs that offers important information for anyone who has, or cares for, someone with diabetes.

Patricia Kulbeth is a registered dietitian with UCHealth Memorial and she is one of the many experts that will be at the expo to answer questions about managing diabetes.

Patricia says, “A group of people I see for appointments in my role here with UCHealth Memorial are patients who have just been newly diagnosed with diabetes, or people who are caring for aging parents who have been on their own and have diabetes, and they come to me and say, ‘I don't' know what to do.’ "

Larry Dahmen clearly remembers when he was first diagnosed with Type I diabetes. Larry, who works in health care himself at UCHealth Memorial Hospital, where he’s in charge of inventory analysis for the cardiovascular and endovascular service lines, recalls that it was obvious something wasn't right with his health. “About 12 years ago I couldn't quench my thirst; no matter what I drank, I was always thirsty. All of the sudden my vision started getting really blurry. I knew something wasn't right so I went to the doctor.”

The diagnosis was shocking, and he clearly recalls how the news hit him. “At first it was anger, and then denial. I just couldn't believe that I had it. You hear the word ‘diabetes’ and no one wants to get it.”

For the first five years, Larry says managing his diabetes very cumbersome. “I poked my finger eight to 10 times a day. I had to take shots eight to 10 times a day depending on if I needed more insulin. If I did need more insulin, I would have to get the syringe out and draw it up. Whatever I was doing, I had to stop and go find somewhere to do all this.”

These days, thanks to his UCHealth Diabetes educators, monitoring and managing his blood sugar is vastly more convenient, and Larry will talk about that process – and the technology he uses - in our next story.

The Community Diabetes Expo, which features providers from across the region, is this Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon at the UCHealth Memorial Administration Center at 2420 East Pikes Peak Ave.

UCHealth is a proud sponsor of Your Healthy Family