Polk County Health Department to Hold “Diabetes Screening Day”

On Monday, January 27 from 8-11:00 am, Polk County Health Department will hold a “Diabetes Screening Day” at 1907 Carpenter Avenue in Des Moines where you can get free diabetes and dental screenings and access to resources to manage or prevent diabetes.

“Untreated diabetes can cause debilitating consequences that can affect your every-day life such as losing a foot or leg to amputation, becoming blind, or having pregnancy complications. Imagine not being able to take your dog for a walk, not reading to your grandchild a bedtime story, or not having a healthy baby,” said Rick Kozin, Polk County Health Department Director.

At Diabetes Screening Day you will get a free blood glucose screening and dental screening as well as getting connected to resources and programs that can help you better manage or prevent diabetes. If you have diabetes you can live a normal life by improving nutrition, using medications appropriately, and incorporating physical activity into every day.  

“We know that early detection of diabetes symptoms and treatment can decrease the chance of complications from diabetes. But, we also know people need information and a plan to improve their eating and activity habits,” said Leah Gabriel, ARNP, Polk County Health Department Nurse Practitioner.

According to data from the Iowa Department of Public Health from 1990-2009 about 42% of the Iowa adult population has diabetes or pre-diabetes, many of them undiagnosed. The main reason that many cases of diabetes do not get diagnosed is because many of the symptoms seem so harmless. Symptoms include frequent urination, excessive thirst, extreme hunger, unusual weight loss, fatigue, irritability and blurry vision.

Screenings will be available, free of charge, to any Polk County resident. In order to be tested do not eat or drink anything other than water for eight hours prior to event and bring all prescriptions and over the counter medications that you are taking.

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