Diabetes Types, Risk Factors, Symptoms, and Treatments

By Charlie ParsonsFeb 22, 2021486

Diabetes Types, Risk Factors, Symptoms, and Treatments

Diabetes is a health condition in which our body is unable to metabolize blood glucose. Insulin is the hormone present in the pancreas that helps to break down the sugar in our body to provide energy. However, diabetic patients lack this hormone, and therefore, blood sugar increases. In the United States, approximately many individuals above 18 years of age are diagnosed with diabetes. While; around, 30.2 million people go undiagnosed with diabetes, which means roughly 27.9% and 32.7% of the population.

Failing to maintain diabetes, will result in building up the blood sugar level. It will further lead to dangerous complications such as stroke and cardiovascular problems. There are different types of diabetes, and the management of diabetes depends on the type of diabetes. Not all forms of diabetes result from an individual being overweight or heading an inactive lifestyle. Some people deal with diabetes from childhood.

Types of Diabetes

  • Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disorder. In such a case, our body destroys the beta cells that produce insulin, and therefore, the body cannot process blood sugar. This damage is incurable. One can manage diabetes by opting for a healthy lifestyle and with the help of medications. However, why does body attacks the beta cells is yet unclear. Genetic defects play an important role as a cause that results in Type 1 diabetes. Medicines and some lifestyle changes help to control blood sugar levels. Type 1 diabetes affects different age groups. However, it impacts during childhood or young adults. People dealing with Type 1 diabetes should take insulin injections every day to reduce the blood sugar levels. If such people do not have access to insulin, they may even die.

  • Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes occurs due to insulin resistance. In this case, your body fails to use the insulin with higher efficiency. Such a condition puts pressure on the pancreas to secrete more insulin until it cannot fulfill the demand and insulin production stops. Therefore, decreased insulin production results in high sugar levels. Approximately; 95% of people with diabetes are dealing with the type 2 form. It is common in middle-aged and older individuals. It is also termed adult-onset diabetes and insulin-resistant diabetes.

  • Prediabetes

This stage is before type 2 diabetes. In such individuals, the blood sugar level is higher than usual. However, it is not that high, and therefore, prediabetes is not diagnosed as type 2 diabetes.

  • Gestational diabetes

Gestational diabetes occurs when a woman is pregnant and becomes sensitive to insulin. Not all women experience Gestational diabetes. Later, they overcome after giving birth.

Risk Factors Of Different Types Of Diabetes

Risk factors are the common causes that result in diabetes. These risk factors differ based on the type of this disorder.

Risk Factors of Type 1 Diabetes:

  • Family history of type 1 diabetes
  • Pancrease injury
  • Presence of antibodies that attack your organs
  • Physical stress (such as surgery or illness)
  • Exposure to disease caused by viruses

Risk Factors of Prediabetes and Type 2 Diabetes:

  • Family history of type 2 diabetes
  • Obesity or overweight
  • Having high blood pressure
  • Having low levels of LDH and higher levels of triglyceride
  • Being physically inactive
  • Above 45 years
  • Having polycystic ovary syndrome
  • Having a history of cardiovascular disorder or stroke
  • Being a smoker

Risk Factors of Gestational Diabetes:

  • Family of prediabetes or type 2 diabetes
  • Being African-American, Hispanic, Native American, or Asian-American
  • Overweight before pregnancy
  • Being above 25 years of age

Common Symptoms of Diabetes

  • increased urination or frequent urination
  • dehydration
  • weight loss
  • hunger
  • exhaustion
  • skin problems
  • slow healing of wounds
  • yeast infections
  • tingling or insensitivity in the feet

Treatments of Diabetes

Your doctor will help to reduce the blood sugar level. Some are oral medications, while some are injections. Here we will mainly discuss type 1 and type 2 diabetes treatments as they are common in use.

Type 1 Diabetes

As mentioned earlier, type 1 diabetes lacks insulin hormone. Therefore, insulin needs to be introduced into the body. Four types of insulin are usually advised. They differ based on how rapidly they work and how long their effect remains. Following are the four types of insulin.

Rapid-acting insulin: It works within 15 minutes and lasts up to three to four hours.

Short-acting insulin: acts within 30 minutes and lasts up to six to eight hours.

Intermediate-acting insulin: It starts its work within 1 to 2 hours and lasts 12 to 18 hours.

Long-acting insulin: It starts to work a few hours, and the effect lasts up to 24 hours.

Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes can be controlled, with some medicines. Your doctor will also advise you to make changes in your lifestyle. One must keep checking the blood sugar levels in type 2 diabetes to maintain it at a specific range.

These are some tips to manage type 2 diabetes:

Consume food with high fiber and healthy carbohydrates. Eating fruits, whole grains, and veggies will help to control blood sugar.

Have meals at regular intervals

Only eat until you are full.

Keep your weight under control. Maintain heart health by minimizing complex carbohydrates and fat.

Work out regularly.

Medications to control type 2 diabetes:

  • Metformin:

It helps to control or lower your blood glucose levels and increases your body's ability to react to insulin. It is one of the preferred medicines for most people with type 2 diabetes.

  • Sulfonylureas:

These medicines are oral tablets. It works to produce a higher amount of insulin in the body and controls sugar levels.

  • Meglitinides:

It is a rapid-acting drug that works to stimulate pancreas activity for producing more insulin.

  • Thiazolidinediones:

This drug helps to reduce insulin sensitivity and helps to secrete insulin in a higher amount.

  • Dipeptidyl Peptidase-4 Inhibitors:

These are not potent but mild medications that help to control blood sugar levels effectively

  • Glucagon-Like Peptide-1 (GLP-1) Receptor Agonists:

The GLP receptor agonists act by slowing down the digestion process and later works for breaking down the glucose in the body.

  • Sodium-Glucose Cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) Inhibitors:

These drugs help to stop the reabsorption of sugar in the blood. It directly sends the excess glucose to the urine.