Type 1 diabetes is a condition in which the pancreas fails to produce insulin. Insulin is a hormone that is necessary for the body to convert food, especially sugar (glucose) and starches, into energy. Type 1 diabetes is diabetes that has an early onset which occurs during childhood through young adulthood. It was formally called juvenile diabetes.
The development of type 1 diabetes can be genetic or due to infection from certain viruses. Treatment for type 1 diabetes involves blood glucose monitoring and the administration of insulin since the pancreas is not producing it.
The physician advises on the treatment and administration of insulin based on the levels of glucose in the blood. Blood glucose levels are checked with a glucose meter. The monitoring of glucose levels is often done several times a day. Careful monitoring of the amount of sugar in the blood is a crucial component in diabetes treatment.
Healthy diet and exercise help decrease blood glucose levels. The physician may suggest a consultation with a dietician to construct a diabetic diet for the patient to follow. Exercise helps glucose be absorbed by cells. A decrease in the insulin dose may be necessary while exercising.
Illnesses, including the common cold, can increase the amount of glucose in the blood. Therefore, when people with diabetes are sick, they may need to increase their insulin dosages to compensate. Stress can also impact the blood glucose level and need for insulin.
Type 1 diabetes increases the individual’s risk for certain diseases. Heart disease, blindness, neuropathy, and kidney damage are potential complications of diabetes. Neuropathy is nerve damage.
Skin care and diabetic foot care are important for those with diabetes. If skin damage or injuries to the foot are treated early, associated complications can often be avoided. This is also true with eye problems. Early detection and treatment is paramount to prevent serious complications associated with diabetes.