Type 2 Diabetes Medications
Type 2 diabetes medications & insulin therapy
Some individuals with Type 2 diabetes are able to accomplish their blood glucose level target by properly managing their diabetes with workouts and diet alone; however there are many who also require medications or insulin therapy. Now, which medications would suit you best depends on various factors, which includes your blood glucose levels as well as any other health related issues.
How to choose the best diabetes medication?
There is no single tailor-made diabetes cure which would suit every patient, as what works for you might not work for some other. Your physician is the best person who can actually assist you to understand both the advantages and disadvantages of a particular diabetes medicine, and decide how a particular medication or a combination of various medications might be best for your entire diabetes management plan.
Various types of Type 2 diabetes drugs are available, and each of these works in diverse ways to lower the blood glucose level. A medicine might work to:
- Stimulate your pancreas gland to make and secrete more insulin
- Inhibit the process of production and secretion of sugar from the liver gland
- Improvise the cells’ sensitivity to insulin
- Block the stomach enzymes from breaking down carbohydrates
- Slow down the movement of food through your stomach
- Inhibit the process of re-absorption of sugar in the kidneys
6.3 Types of medications
Each type of medications consists of one or more drugs. Now, some of these medicines are consumed orally, while some are required to be injected. Following are the examples of Type 2 diabetes treatment medications:
Metformin: Metformin is usually the initial medication being prescribed to the patient with Type 2 diabetes. The medicine works to improve your body cells’ sensitivity to insulin so that the insulin is used efficiently by your body. It even reduces sugar production in the liver. However, the medicine typically won’t lower your blood glucose level sufficiently on its own. Your physician would surely recommend changes in your inactive lifestyle, for example, losing weight and physical workouts.
Side effects: Metformin’s possible side effects are diarrhea and nausea. However, once your body gets used to the medication such side effects usually vanish.
In case, both Metformin as well as changes in lifestyles aren’t adequate to manage the blood glucose levels, then other oral as well as injected drugs could be prescribed by your physician.
Sulfonylureas: Such medicines assist the body to secrete more insulin in the blood stream. These medications class includes Glimepiride (Amaryl), Glipizide (Glucotrol) and Glyburide (Glynase, DiaBeta).
Side effects: The possible side effects of such medicines are weight gain and low blood glucose level.
Meglitinides: Such medicines work just similar to Sulfonylureas medicines by assisting your body to secrete more insulin into the blood stream. However, these acts faster comparatively, and don’t remain active for as long in your body. These medications class includes Nateglinide (Starlix) and Repaglinide (Prandin).
Side effects: The possible side effects of such medicines are similar to Sulfonylureas i.e. weight gain and low blood glucose level, but is not as much risky comparatively.
Thiazolidinediones: Quite similar to Metformin, these medicines work to improve your body cells sensitivity to insulin. Examples include Pioglitazone (Actos) and Rosiglitazone (Avandia)
Side effects: The possible side effects of such medicines are weight gain and other more severe effects, such as heart failure as well as fracture risks. As a result, such medications typically aren’t a first-choice.
DPP-4 inhibitors: Such medicines assist to lower blood glucose levels; however the effects tend to be relatively modest. These don’t result in weight gain though. Examples include Linagliptin (Tradjenta), Saxagliptin (Onglyza), and Sitagliptin (Januvia).
GLP-1 (Receptor Agonists): Such medicines tend to slow down the digestion process and assist to reduce the blood glucose levels. However, these are not as much effective as Sulfonylureas. These are not recommended to be used alone. Examples include Liraglutide (Victoza) and Exenatide (Byetta).
Side Effects: An increased pancreatitis risk and nausea, are its possible side effects.
SGLT2 (inhibitors): Such medicines are the latest diabetes drugs available in the market. These work to prevent your kidneys from reabsorbing glucose (sugar) in your bloodstream. In its place, the glucose (sugar) is excreted through the urine. Such medications class includes Dapagliflozin (Farxiga) and Canagliflozin (Invokana).
Side effects: These might lead to urinary tract infections and yeast infections.
Insulin therapy: There are number of individuals with Type 2 diabetes who require insulin therapy as well. Insulin therapy used to be the last resort in the past, however nowadays it’s often been prescribed relatively early due to its benefits.
Insulin is required to be injected, since the normal intake of the medicine would interfere with your digestion. Based on your requirements, your physician might prescribe a combination of insulin types for you to use all through the day and night. Usually, the patients with Type 2 diabetes begin the use of insulin with a single long-acting shot during the night.
At present, there are various insulin types and each of these works in a diverse way. Following are the types of insulin:
- Insulin Lispro (Humalog)
- Insulin Glulisine (Apidra)
- Insulin Detemir (Levemir)
- Insulin Glargine (Lantus)
- Insulin Aspart (Novolog)
- Insulin Isophane (Novolin N, Humulin N)
Besides all these medications, your physician may also prescribe you some blood pressure as well as cholesterol-reducing medicines, in order to avert heart and blood vessel ailments.