MacKillop College teacher’s tale of living with diabetes

GET CHECKED: MacKillop College science teacher Michael Croucher wants to spread the word about the danger of undiagnosed diabetes.

GET CHECKED: MacKillop College science teacher Michael Croucher wants to spread the word about the danger of undiagnosed diabetes.

BATHURST school teacher is one of the 1.2 million Australian adults living with type one or type two diabetes.

For the past 15 years his has lived with type two diabetes, facing daily challenges and health scares along the way. 

Diagnosed at 35, he now takes daily injections and medication, has suffered toe amputations and vision issues and endured frequent medical checks.

But that does not keep the MacKillop College science teacher down and he has spoken out about the challenges he faces during National Diabetes Week (July 10-14). 

“I take insulin injections daily. I have two in the morning, one before every meal and one before I go to bed. I take as many as seven in one day,” he said. “I also have to test my blood sugar levels frequently.”

Mr Croucher’s father had diabetes and he went to the doctor when he started to experience similar symptoms.

Diabetes has also affected his nerve system.

Around 10 years ago, his foot had became infected and had swollen up. He went to visit the doctor and it turned out to be a severe infection. 

“He put my on antibiotics and if didn’t get any better the following day, I had to come back,” he said.

“I went back the next day and I was sent off to emergency. 

“They checked my blood sugar levels. It was at 25. It’s meant to between four and eight.

“They had to amputate three toes. I now have four toes on my left and one and a half on my right from further amputations.”

Mr Croucher has special shoes made to fit his feet.

He said National Diabetes Week was a great initiative to educate people about diabetes. 

“It lets other people know what it’s like to have diabetes,” he said.

“The most important risk is when you have diabetes but don’t knowg you have it. 

“Some people might think there’s a big change when you are diagnosed, but there isn’t a big change. You just have to watch blood sugar levels, keep away from sweet things, eat more fruit and vegetables and eat less carbs.”

Many people people live with diabetes, but are unaware. If you are concerned, contact your local GP. 

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