What is type 1 diabetes?

Type 1 occurs when the pancreas stops producing insulin. It usually starts in young people under the age of 30 and is often hereditary.

25 January 2016

According to the American Diabetes Association, the assumption that type 1 diabetes is a genetic condition inherited from our parents may not be as clear to scientists as previously thought, but may be due to genetic mutations that occur after birth. However, medical professionals agree that certain factors would have to be inherited from your parents in order for you to be at risk of developing type 1.

Type 1 diabetics run the risk of having too little energy because the blood glucose their body translates from the food they consume cannot enter the cells of the body because of deficient insulin production. This results in hyperglycaemia.

Hypoglycaemia results when too much insulin is given for the level of blood sugar at a particular time.This state of low glucose levels in the blood stream is known as hypoglycaemia or insulin shock. When this occurs, type 1 diabetics typically need to eat a small, sugary snack, followed by a more sustaining food such as a sandwich to help improve their blood glucose levels. 

Type 1 diagnosis

Tests your GP will conduct include taking a urine sample, which will show if glucose is present. Since urine doesn’t usually contain glucose, finding it in the sample would be reason to proceed to a blood test for confirmation.

Initially, this blood test might not reveal any major cause for concern, but your doctor may want to conduct an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT), which would require you to drink a glucose beverage and then undergo the blood test again every half an hour for the next two hours. This is so that your doctor can monitor how your body deals with the glucose in your system.

Once you’ve been diagnosed, you will also need to undergo the glycatedhaemoglobin (HbA1c) test, which tells one what the average glucose level has been over the previous three months. It does not tell one what the blood sugar level is at the time of the test. This test takes a look at an average blood glucose level to see how well your body is responding to treatment. 

For more info and assistance

  • Clicks Clinics will help you prevent, identify and manage diabetes with their wide range of screening tests and health assessments.To make an appointment at a Clicks Clinic, call 0860 254 257 or visit Clicks Clinics online

Read More: Diabetes Super Section