You know how there are some things that people say which completely get your goat? Well today, I am going to be getting on my virtual soap-box (as pictured neatly to your left. Apparently I wear slightly muddied Doc Martins...not that far from the truth some of the time). And what has got me riled up? Well, that would be the following statement:
Diabetes isn't a disease!
Yes, you heard me. But, annoying, frustrating and downright irritating as that statement would be from someone who perhaps doesn't know much about diabetes, or was ignorant or misinformed, what really gets me is when this comes from the mouths (or fingers) of people who actually have diabetes!
OK, I can understand that some people might have a problem with saying they have a 'disease'. It does not, however, mean you are 'diseased'. You're not unclean, infectious, or anything like that. I mean, I get it. I was looking for a picture to go with this post, and googled 'disease', and hit the images tab. I wish I hadn't. There were a few images I saw there that will forever remain burned in my memory. But hey, most of the things I saw aren't the fault of the people in the pictures. It's just unfortunate. Just like the fact that the term 'disease' has negative associations for most people.
I know it's not the be all and end all of all sources, but this is actually a pretty good description, so let's see what Wikipedia has to say about disease:
A disease or medical condition is an abnormal condition of an organism that impairs bodily functions, associated with specific symptoms and signs.It may be caused by external factors, such as infectious disease, or it may be caused by internal dysfunctions, such as autoimmune diseases.
So let's break that down, shall we? Impairs bodily functions? I'd say that's a check. Associated with specific symptoms and signs? Again, check. OK, diabetes isn't infectious, but 'caused by internal dysfunctions, such as autoimmune diseases'? Check, check and check again! So we're definitely dealing with a disease here, people. Yet, Wikipedia does go on to say....
In many cases, the terms disease, disorder, morbidity and illness are used interchangeably. In some situations, specific terms are considered preferable.
Which, to my understanding means that you can call it whatever you like, really, but it doesn't matter if you call a spade a shovel, a digging implement, or even Arnold, it's still a spade at the end of the day.
I have a disease. And I'm OK with that. Don't tell me that what I have isn't a disease, because it is, even if you don't want to call it that...
And that would be me taking off my slightly muddy DMs for the day.