Home > Physical Health > Understanding Diabetes

Understanding Diabetes

By: Beth Morrisey MLIS - Updated: 18 Aug 2010 | comments*Discuss
 
Diabetes diabetes Type I diabetes Type

Diabetes is a condition in which a person's blood sugar remains too high because the body can not use up all of the glucose that it produces and consumes. Glucose is naturally made in the liver, and it is also a by-product of the digestion of foods high in starch and sugar. Usually insulin, a hormone produced in the pancreas, would help glucose be burned as fuel by the body's cells, but in diabetics this insulin is either absent (Type I diabetes), too little to cope with the amount of glucose in the blood (Type II diabetes) or does not work properly (Type II diabetes). Currently there are over 2 million Britons living with diabetes.

What Are the Symptoms of Diabetes?

There are several common symptoms for both Type I and Type II diabetes. Not all people suffering from diabetes will experience all of these symptoms, those with Type I will usually find that these symptoms come up quickly and obviously, often within only the last few weeks. Those with Type II diabetes may not notice any symptoms, or may feel that they have been around for a while and didn't add up to anything important. These symptoms include:

  • Excessive thirst.
  • Excessive need to urinate, particularly at night.
  • Tiredness and listlessness.
  • Weight loss, even if appetite remains the same or increases.
  • Thrush or genital itching.
  • Blurred vision.
  • An increased healing time for cuts, scratches and scrapes.
  • Irritability or short temper.
  • Cramps or constipation (more common for Type II diabetes).

How is Diabetes Diagnosed?

Diabetes can be diagnosed relatively easily by two simple tests. The first test measures glucose in the urine. If an excessive amount of glucose is found in the urine, a blood test will then be performed in order to measure the amount of glucose in the blood.

How is Diabetes Treated?

There is no cure for diabetes, but there are effective treatments available for both types. Those with Type I diabetes are often called insulin dependent diabetics because they must administer synthetic insulin to themselves, usually by daily injections or via an insulin pump. Type II diabetes can be more readily controlled with a change of diet, though some medication may be prescribed if results are not obtained to a satisfactory standard.

Though there is no cure for diabetes, there are treatments available which allow all diabetics to lead happy, full lives. In addition to any treatments recommended by your GP, anyone with or worried about diabetes should take care to eat a healthy, balanced diet, take plenty of regular exercise and get enough rest every night. Cutting out smoking, drinking to excess and doing drugs are also essential to good health. With just a few changes to their daily routines, those with diabetes can continue on with life as normal.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • Lola
    Re: All about Abortion
    I think im pregnant im 13 almost 14 but im not sure what to do its been a week or 2 weeks im not sure on what to do ive already lost mum and i…
    3 July 2020
  • Sasuke
    Re: How to Deal with Pressure From Parents
    Same my mom doesn't understands my feelings and is always saying I time pass..even when I am viewing some light joke…
    25 June 2020
  • Ian
    Re: Coping With Strict Parents
    Before I reached puberty, my parents treated me very well, just like many parents do to their only child. Being my social partners…
    25 June 2020
  • BarbieAri
    Re: Coping With Strict Parents
    That is sad I can relate to every single one of you...I'm not gonna write about it because I would take up to like 2 pages...but…
    24 June 2020
  • Charlie
    Re: Coping With Strict Parents
    My parents don’t let me hang out with anyone. When I ask why they get mad at me and say “because we don’t want you to”. I can’t leave…
    21 June 2020
  • unknown
    Re: How to Deal with Pressure From Parents
    I am in lockdown and do all of my school work at home. I dont know why but I have not been doing enough and the…
    18 June 2020
  • Lili
    Re: Warning Signs of Self Harming
    I’ve seen your comments and it’s inspired me too tell you guys my story. I’m Lili I’m 13 years old and I’ve never had the courage…
    8 June 2020
  • Lily
    Re: How to Deal with Pressure From Parents
    I am 18 and i am going to uni soon.i am not a really open person with my family because i felt there is nothing to…
    8 June 2020
  • Ashleen
    Re: How to Deal with Pressure From Parents
    Hi I am in form 3.I used to be a performer but suddenly i started becoming worse in class 7. Since i started high…
    5 June 2020
  • Evee
    Re: Coping With Strict Parents
    Hey, I am fifteen years old. I have lived with my Grandparents since I was about a month old, my mother is a drunk as my father is…
    4 June 2020