Type 1 diabetes

Type 1 Diabetes is more common than people may think. Every year there are roughly 13,000 cases in the US that are diagnosed in children. This disease can be diagnosed in childhood as well as later in life. When you have Diabetes it means you are suffering from a chronic condition, but it can be managed successfully. Diabetes is considered a disease and it affects how the body uses the main type of sugar in the blood. This main type of sugar is referred to as glucose. We obtain our glucose through the foods that we eat and it provides the body with the fuel it needs to maintain proper bodily functioning. When we eat and our food hits our gastrointestinal track, our bodies break them down into nutrients and glucose that is then absorbed thru the bloodstream. After we eat and this process occurs, our glucose level in our blood will rise. As it rises it sends a message to the pancreas to make insulin, which is a hormone that gets released into our bloodstream. For people who have diabetes this is where the problem lies. The body cannot make the insulin or cannot respond to it correctly. Our bodies need insulin to allow the cells to absorb the glucose for energy and when the glucose is not absorbed the sugars stay in the blood causing elevated sugar levels and several health problems.

Type 1 diabetes is caused when the pancreas becomes unable to make insulin. With this disease the person’s immune system is working against them and is destroying the cells in the pancreas that are in charge of making insulin. After the cells are destroyed they are no longer able to produce insulin. The exact reason why this occurs in so many people is unknown, but research is still being done to pinpoint the actual cause. There is no way of preventing this disease. It is not something that you can be vaccinated for or something contagious. After a diagnosis has been made and it is determined a person does in fact have type 1 diabetes it means that this is something that will last a lifetime and can’t be cured. However, there are treatments that one can take to manage the disease and keep the blood glucose levels in check.

Some common signs to look for when diabetes may be present are fatigue, frequent urination, abnormal thirst and weight loss. In children, bedwetting may become an issue and yeast infections in young girls that have not yet hit the puberty years. It is extremely important to have Type 1 diabetes diagnosed as soon as possible to prevent further health problems. Some of the short term problems that come with undiagnosed diabetes are vomiting, breathing problems, loss of consciousness, and flu-like symptoms. Long term damage to the body includes kidney damage, heart disease, strokes, vision loss, nerve damage and more. Taking diabetes seriously is very important.

For those that have been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, your doctor will work very closely with you to ensure you are receiving proper medical care. Some things to expect in order to control glucose levels include checking blood sugar levels regularly, taking insulin injections or using an insulin pump, watching the diet closely, getting regular exercise and having routine doctor visits in be sure your treatments are working well and to make sure no other major health risks are developing as a side effect from the diabetes. Although, dealing with diabetes can become a hassle it is still a disease that is manageable. Just be sure to stick to your doctor’s treatment plan and make it to all of your schedule doctor’s visits to be sure you are staying as healthy as possible.

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Last updated on Aug 10th, 2009 and filed under Diabetes Mellitus. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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