Flatbush Family Practice

Alford Smith, MD

Family Medicine Practice located in East Flatbush, Brooklyn, NY

Around 10% of American adults have diabetes, and another 33% have prediabetes, which increases their risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. In the East Flatbush neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, Alford Smith, MD, and the team diagnose diabetes at Flatbush Family Practice and offer personalized treatment plans to control your disease and restore your health. If you’re concerned about diabetes, call Flatbush Family Practice or make an appointment online today.

Diabetes Q & A

What is diabetes?

Diabetes includes diseases that interfere with the way your body produces or uses insulin. The three main types of diabetes include:

Type 1

Type 1 diabetes occurs when your pancreas doesn’t produce enough insulin to regulate your blood sugar. Medical researchers believe the disease is caused by an autoimmune condition that destroys the insulin-making cells in your pancreas. 

Type 1 diabetes usually emerges during childhood, which is why it’s sometimes referred to as juvenile diabetes. 

Type 2

Type 2 diabetes, sometimes called insulin resistance, develops when your body doesn’t use insulin correctly, and your blood sugar levels increase. Type 2 diabetes usually develops in adulthood, although it’s becoming more common in children and adolescents. 

Your genetics contribute to your risk of Type 2 diabetes. However, lifestyle factors, including your diet and weight, have strong links to the disease. 

Many patients develop prediabetes, which involves elevated blood sugar levels that haven’t reached the diagnostic criteria for full-blown diabetes first. 


Some women develop gestational diabetes during the second trimester of pregnancy. The placenta produces a hormone that can interfere with the way your body uses insulin. 

While gestational diabetes typically goes away soon after the baby is born, it can increase your risk of Type 2 diabetes later in life. 

What are the warning signs of diabetes?

Diabetes doesn’t always cause noticeable symptoms, especially in its early stages. However, if you have Type 1 diabetes or your condition is severe, you might notice symptoms including:

  • Increased thirst and hunger
  • Frequent urination
  • Fatigue
  • Blurry vision
  • Unexplained weight loss

If left untreated, your disease can progress and cause complications, including neuropathy, foot ulcers, infection, diabetic retinopathy, and blindness. 

How do you treat diabetes?

Following your diagnosis, the team at Flatbush Family Practice creates a customized treatment program. They often include counseling and education to help you learn about your disease and how adjustments to your diet and exercise habits can help manage your condition. 

They might also prescribe medication to help your body process glucose and lower your blood sugar levels. For example, if you have Type 1 diabetes, you need to take insulin to make up for what your body doesn’t produce. 

Call Flatbush Family Practice or make an appointment online today if you’re concerned about diabetes and want expert, personalized care.