Diabetes is a serious medical condition that causes the amount of sugar in your blood to become too high. This sugar is what your body burns for fuel, and to do that, it needs a hormone called insulin to transfer that sugar from your blood into the cells of your muscles and organs. When your body is unable to use its insulin well, or make enough insulin, the sugar you get from your food stays in your blood, which starves your cells of energy. Diabetes comes in two forms, type I and type II.
What is Type I Diabetes (Type One Diabetes)
Type I diabetes, or juvenile diabetes, is usually diagnosed in young adults and children, although it can sometimes develop in adults too. With type I diabetes, the body's immune system attacks the insulin-producing cells. This damages or destroys the body's ability to make insulin, leaving the body chronically starved of energy.
Type I diabetes can be controlled by regular exercise and eating a healthy diet. Carefully monitoring both blood pressure and cholesterol is a part of how doctors monitor this condition, so people with diabetes should make regular appointments to have them checked. Blood sugar levels need to be monitored on a daily basis. There are special kits to allow type I diabetes sufferers to do this at home. Some people with type I diabetes also need to get regular injections of insulin to make up for the fact that their bodies no longer produce any by themselves.
People with type I diabetes need to be vigilant about feelings of increased thirst and the need to urinate often. These can be signs that insulin levels are off and that the disease is not under control. Blurred vision, constant hunger, fatigue, and unexplained weight loss are also reasons to be concerned.
What is Type II Diabetes (Type Two Diabetes)
Type II diabetes, also called adult-onset diabetes, usually develops in adulthood, although teens and even young children can develop it as well. Being significantly overweight can increase the odds of developing it. So can eating an unhealthy diet and not exercising enough.
Exercising regularly and eating healthy foods will greatly reduce the chances of developing this type of diabetes. With type II diabetes, the body is not able to use the insulin that it makes very well anymore. Exercising regularly, eliminating junk food from the diet, and eating healthy foods can bring type II diabetes symptoms completely under control without the need for insulin injections.
A frequent need to urinate, particularly at night, constant thirst, blurry vision, frequent infections, fatigue, and slow healing are all signs warning for type II diabetes. Many of those with type II diabetes never show any of these symptoms, though.
Is there a cure for diabetes?
No cure exists for either type of diabetes. However, by following a strictly healthy diet and getting plenty of exercise, type 2 diabetes can be put into remission. Type 1 diabetes can be improved with the right drugs. While managing diabetes is a life-long endeavour, sufferers can often feel like they are fully healthy again.
Diabetes Awareness training teaches learners about diabetes management, as well as how to recognise a diabetic emergency and the complications that the disease can cause. For more training courses like this, go to our Clinical Care Course Range and Specialist Care Course Range pages.