Velocity Care explains the different types of diabetes and their symptoms
Although diabetes is a disease that has existed for thousands of years, it is only within the last century that we have really started to understand it and the effects that it can have on the body. Doctors can now differentiate between the types of diabetes and provide individualized treatment plans depending on which type a patient has.
What is diabetes?
Diabetes is a metabolic disease that affects how the body processes glucose (sugar). Our pancreas produces a hormone called insulin, and this hormone is what allows the sugar that we eat to be absorbed into our cells and used for energy. If there is too little insulin produced or if the body does not respond to this insulin properly, glucose will remain in the bloodstream and won’t be processed by the body. There are three main types of diabetes, and your treatment plan will depend on which type you have.
Type 1 diabetes
Also commonly referred to as juvenile diabetes, Type 1 diabetes usually occurs in people under the age of 30. For people with this form of diabetes, their bodies almost completely stop producing insulin making it impossible for them to metabolize the sugar in their food – thus causing drastic and sudden increases in their blood glucose levels. The exact cause for Type 1 diabetes is unknown, but studies suggest that a combination of genetics and environmental factors may play a role. People with this type of diabetes take insulin injections to keep their levels optimum.
Type 2 diabetes
The progression of this type of diabetes is much slower than that of Type 1. Though it was once called adult-onset diabetes because it occurs most commonly in those over the age of 30, with the rise of obesity in the United States, this type of diabetes is occurring more frequently in young adults and sometimes even children. In Type 2 diabetes, the body begins to produce lower levels of insulin and/or the body’s cells do not respond as well to the insulin that is produced. Researchers say that being overweight, making unhealthy food choices, being inactive and making poor lifestyle choices can greatly increase one’s chances of developing Type 2 diabetes. In its early stages, people can usually control Type 2 with diet and exercise. If it progresses, there are a variety of oral medications and injections (including insulin) that individuals can use to treat it.
This type of diabetes occurs only in pregnant women. It is due to the hormonal and physical changes that happen in a woman’s body during pregnancy and usually requires insulin to treat. It is especially important to closely monitor blood glucose levels of a woman with gestational diabetes because the proper development of the baby depends on having consistent, minimally fluctuating, blood glucose levels.
Symptoms of diabetes
The symptoms of diabetes are the same no matter what type of the disease is present. The most prevalent symptoms include:
- Frequent urination.
- Excessive thirst.
- Sudden, unexplained weight loss.
- Numbness or tingling in the hands and feet.
- Wounds that take a long time to heal.
Diabetes is a serious disease that can have life-threatening consequences. Monitoring your blood glucose, making healthy food choices, exercising regularly and taking your medications exactly as prescribed can help to keep your blood sugar in check and prevent you from experiencing the symptoms commonly associated with the disease.
If you would like more information on diabetes or if you fear that you may be suffering from some of the symptoms listed above, Velocity Care Urgent Treatment Center can help. The friendly staff at our urgent care clinics can answer all your questions and devise a treatment plan that is right for you. Visit our website today to find a walk-in clinic near you.
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