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Diabetes Awareness Week

By Tiarna Breen July 16, 2021

Diabetes Awareness Week

Approximately 1.8 million Australians suffer from diabetes, with the numbers growing each year. Diabetes is a metabolic disease that results in high blood pressure. The body either cannot effectively use insulin or it does not produce enough to properly do its job. If left untreated, diabetes is serious and can result in damage to the kidneys, nerves, eyes and organs. By being aware of the symptoms, you can catch onto this as soon as possible, both in yourself and your loved ones!  

The Symptoms of Diabetes 

The symptoms vary from person to person; however, these are some common signs that you should look out for. 

  • Increased appetite 
  • Increased thirst 
  • Blurry vision 
  • Unintentional weight loss 
  • Extreme tiredness 
  • Frequent urination 

Diabetes symptoms can be mild, which makes it more difficult to catch onto. However, if you feel like you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, even if it doesn’t seem urgent, catching up with your doctor is always a good idea.  

Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes 

The difference between these 2 forms of diabetes is the management of them and the reason they develop. The direct cause of type 1 is unknown, as the body mistakenly attacks insulin producing cells. The pancreas is unable to produce an efficient amount of insulin, which is needed to convert glucose into energy. When this happens, the brain and body can slow down, and the individual can experience dangerously low blood glucose levels. The person may become drowsy, confused and shaky.  

Diabetes type 2 can develop due to lifestyle choices and genetic disposition. The effects are similar, and it is also extremely dangerous for blood glucose levels to drop in any case.  

Gestational Diabetes 

This type of diabetes can develop during pregnancy, when the body cannot meet the demands for more insulin, which then results in high blood glucose levels.  

Who Has an Increased Chance of Diabetes? 

Your chances of developing diabetes type 2 increases if you have a family history of diabetes as well as a lifestyle that allows it to fully form. People who have unhealthy eating habits and are overweight are far more likely to develop diabetes than someone who isn’t. Those of you than are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes have no other explanation other than the fact that you’re unlucky.  

Treatments 

Diabetes cannot be cured however, it can be managed.  

  • Type 1 diabetes requires daily management, which can include lifelong insulin injections and the frequent monitoring of blood glucose levels. 
  • Type 2 can be managed by diet, weight management, exercise and the regular monitoring of blood glucose.  
  • Gestational diabetes is managed quite similarly to diabetes type two, but it is important to catch on to this as soon as possible to reduce the risk of complications during pregnancy.  
How to Help 

If you or someone you know lives with diabetes, it is important to know what to do in a situation that requires immediate help. Usually, the individual will have insulin injections on hand that can be used to resolve the issue quickly. Talk with your friends and loved ones about how to use these and when it is suitable to do so.  


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