Blood glucose or sugar is your body’s primary source of energy, and it comes from the foods you eat, mainly carbohydrates. Although glucose is the primary fuel for energy production, too much of it can damage your blood vessels, putting you at risk of severe health problems such as stroke and kidney disease. Diabetes is a common cause of high blood sugar, but your Newport Beach endocrinologist can help you manage it. The following are the different types of diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that occurs when your body attacks beta cells in your body. Beta cells facilitate the production of insulin in our pancreas – a hormone that regulates blood sugar levels. When the body’s natural defenses attack the beta cells, the pancreas secretes little or no insulin, allowing the accumulation of glucose in the bloodstream. There is no known cause for type 1 diabetes, but secondary diabetes occurs when the beta cells are wiped out due to an injury or a disease affecting your pancreas.
The symptoms for type 1 diabetes are often subtle but can worsen as the disease progresses. They include dry mouth, increased hunger, fatigue, frequent urination, unexplained weight loss, blurry vision, mood changes, bedwetting in children, and frequent infections of your skin, vagina, and urinary tract system. There is no cure for type 1 diabetes, but insulin shots and lifestyle modifications can help patients control their blood sugar.
Type 2 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is an abnormality in how your body cells respond to insulin. For type 2 diabetes, there are two primarily interrelated problems at work. One, your pancreas secretes little insulin, and second, your cells are resistant to insulin action. Type 2 diabetes is common in older people, but obesity in children has increased type 2 diabetes among children. Most people live with type 2 diabetes without knowing it since the symptoms develop slowly. Individuals with symptoms may experience increased hunger, unintended weight loss, frequent infections, increased thirst, and blurred vision.
Like type 1 diabetes, there is no cure for type 2 diabetes, but losing weight, eating healthy, and exercising can help you regulate blood sugar. Other times diet and exercise may not be enough to control blood sugar, and in such cases, your doctor may recommend insulin therapy or diabetes medications.
Prediabetes (Borderline diabetes)
Your doctor diagnoses you with prediabetes if your blood sugar level is higher than usual but not accelerated enough to be categorized as type 2 diabetes. Most people with type 2 diabetes initially had prediabetes, but you can prevent disease progression with early intervention. If you have prediabetes, you may not experience symptoms, but if you do, they may include frequent peeing, blurry vision, and fatigue.
Gestational diabetes is diagnosed for the first time in pregnant women, and like other forms of the disease, it affects how your cells use glucose. When left uncontrolled, gestational diabetes can affect your and the baby’s health. The good news is that medications and lifestyle adjustments can help regulate blood sugar.
If you have further questions about diabetes, consult with your specialist at Dr. Sean P. Nikravan, MD.