About Type 1 Diabetes

So what is Diabetes Mellitus or Type 1 Diabetes

Diabetes Mellitus type 1 (also known as Type 1 Diabetes, or T1DM; formerly Insulin Dependent Diabetes or Juvenile Diabetes) is a form of diabetes mellitus that results from the autoimmune destruction of the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. The subsequent lack of insulin leads to increased blood and urine glucose. The classical symptoms are polyuria (frequent urination),polydipsia (increased thirst), polyphagia (increased hunger), and weight loss.

Untreated, type 1 diabetes is ultimately fatal; however, the disease can be controlled with supplemental insulin. Insulin is most commonly administered by injection at periodic intervals several times per day, though other options, such as insulin pumps, exist.

Insulin therapy must be continued indefinitely and does not usually impair normal daily activities. Patients are usually trained to manage their disease independently; however, for some this can be challenging.

Incidence varies from 8 to 17 per 100,000 in Northern Europe and the U.S. with a high of about 35 per 100,000 in Scandinavia to a low of 1 per 100,000 in Japan and China.

Type 1 diabetes can be distinguished from type 2 by autoantibody testing – glutamic acid decarboxylase autoantibodies (GADA), islet cell autoantibodies (ICA), insulinoma-associated (IA-2) autoantibodies, and zinc transporter autoantibodies (ZnT8) are present in individuals with type 1 diabetes, but not type 2. The C-peptide assay, which measures endogenous insulin production, can also be used.

Type 1 diabetes can lead to a number of complications, both in the short term and in the long term. Furthermore, complications may arise from both low blood sugar and high blood sugar, both due to the non-physiological manner in which insulin is replaced. Low blood sugar may lead to seizures or episodes of unconsciousness, and requires emergency treatment. In the short term, untreated type 1 diabetes can lead to diabetic ketoacidosis, and in the long term it can lead to eye damage, & organ damage, etc.

One of the most ridiculous things iv ever heard, is that living with Type 1 diabetes, makes absolutely no difference to your life after you have been diagnosed. Only a non Type 1 diabetic would say something like this. It makes a difference, of course it does.
A Type 1 diabetic gets up every morning and plans & balances every thing they do, everything they eat, and everything they inject for the day. Time is also very important. When its time to eat, its time to eat, and there is no delaying this.
We keep a stash of glucose, and testing meters, where ever we regularly hang out, the top section of the fridge will have the GlucoGen that our immediate friends and family will have to learn how to use, and we pack before leaving the house.

Going through life with Type1 Diabetes is what i would call a life style. To stay well, that lifestyle involves watching and knowing what you are eating, counting the carbohydrates in everything you eat, and injecting the appropriate amount of insulin for that carbohydrate. This will make sure your Blood Glucose will stay within normal range and therefore keep you feeling well.
It is necessary to be aware of how you are feeling at all times, as blood glucose tends to rise ( Hyperglycemia ) with the onset of an illness. Exertion and exercise may make your blood glucose drop, so being aware of how hypoglycemia (A Hypo ) feels, is extremely important.
Shock, stress, & emotional upset will also have an impact on your blood glucose daily, so yes it makes a difference to your daily life.
Your type1 diabetes team will educate you in how to deal with the general daily living with Type1 Diabetes, Its them who will give you your sick day plan, and your carbohydrate to insulin ratio. They will teach you how to adjust your insulin while engaging in sport, or challenging physical activities. They will teach you how much glucose to take when in a hypo situation
And also how to reduce you blood glucose, in the event of your reading being a bit too high, this is called a correction Bolus.
Your bolus is the rapid insulin you inject with food or, to correct your blood glucose.
Your basel is the slow release insulin you inject every 24 hours, also called your background insulin.

A diagnosis of Type 1 Diabetes means your pancreas is no longer capable of producing insulin. Through multiple daily injections with insulin pens, syringes or an insulin pump. You will need to work closely with your healthcare team to determine which insulin or insulin’s are best for you and your body, and also to establish with them, what your carbohydrate to insulin ratio is. As carbohydrate will rise you blood glucose, it is necessary to administer insulin when you have eaten this type of food.

Carbohydrate counting is not as difficult as it might seem at first, and the benefits are worth the learning curve at the beginning. It important to know a little about the benefits of carbohydrate counting before you start. If you already know these, then the next step is to begin the practice of counting carbohydrates.

The starting point is to ask how many carbohydrates are in any given food you or your child might eat. Carbohydrates are measured in grams (g). Virtually all packaged foods carry a nutrition label that will tell you the number of grams of carbohydrates per serving. Be sure to distinguish the difference between a single serving and the entire contents of the container. Package labeling is not typically provided for whole foods, such as fruits and vegetables. These you will have to look up, although they’ll likely stick to memory after a while.

Carbs & Cals have both a book and a smart phone app that is very usefull, for establishing the carbs in portions, and as your phone is generally always nearby its useful to have it on your phone. be careful though, use the correct portion size that you are actually going to eat, when matching it to the picture in the carbs & cals app, a bigger portion on the plate in front of you, than the one in the picture, of course means more carbs…………………..

The below link is a good read and a good explanation to what daily life with Type1 is like

Type 1 Diabetes Finally Explained

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