Our Review Process
Our articles undergo extensive medical review by board-certified practitioners to confirm that all factual inferences with respect to medical conditions, symptoms, treatments, and protocols are legitimate, canonical, and adhere to current guidelines and the latest discoveries. Read more.
Our Editorial Team
Shifa Fatima, MSc.
Dr. Apoorva T, MHM.
What is Type 1 Diabetes?
Type 1 diabetes is a disease that makes the pancreas produce either a small amount of insulin or no insulin at all. Insulin is a hormone that requires glucose to enter cells and produce energy to support the body's functions.
Food is the source of glucose for the body; glucose gives the required energy. After consuming food, our body converts the food particles into energy that the bloodstream will absorb. Once the glucose level increases, it triggers the pancreas to produce insulin which controls the sugar level in our body. If there is less insulin, there will be a high amount of sugar that stays in the bloodstream. Type 1 diabetes causes heavy damage and can even cause a life-threatening situation.
Table of Contents
Causes of Types 1 Diabetes
Diabetes type 1 develops when the body's immune system mistakenly targets and kills the cells in the pancreas that are in charge of making insulin. This deterioration may occur gradually over months or years, finally resulting in an absolute and total deficiency of insulin.
Even though scientists do not yet fully understand the etiology of type 1 diabetes, researchers believe that the illness has a significant genetic component. There is a 0.4% risk that you may get the condition if your family has no history of it. Your likelihood of acquiring Type 1 diabetes increases from 1% to 4% if your biological mother has it, and from 3% to 8% if your biological father does. A person's likelihood of acquiring type 1 diabetes increases by up to 30% if both of their biological parents also have the condition. Scientists believe that certain circumstances, such as a virus or chemicals in the environment, can cause your immune system to attack cells in your pancreas if you have a genetic predisposition to developing Type 1 diabetes. Knowing and checking for the symptoms of type 1 diabetes is crucial in managing the disease. Read more about reverse diabetes.
Symptoms of Diabetes
The signs of Type 1 Diabetes are highly precise to analyse, and once they appear, it becomes intense. It will take months for the symptoms to show up even after type 1 diabetes enters your system. Systems are visible only when all the beta cells are destroyed in the body.
- Dehydration, uttermost thirst
- Extreme hunger
- Stomach upset
- Weight loss
- Improper vision
- Heavy breathing problem
- Mood swing
- Vagina infections
- Skin infections
- Frequent urination
Signs of Type 1 Diabetes that you should consider seriously
- Body shaking
- Constant confusion
- Heavy breathing
- Fruity breath
- Impaired consciousness
Long-term Obstacle includes
- Heart diseases
- Blurred eyesight
- Kidney damage
- Loss of fingers or toes
- Loss of teeth
Type 1 Diabetes Risk Factors
Below factors are considered the type 1 diabetes risk factors
- Family history – If your parents or ancestors have diabetes, the probability of you getting the type 1 disease is more.
- Circumstances – The environment has many malicious viruses that affect our bodies and cause many illnesses.
- Autoantibodies – If you identify yourself as having autoantibodies, the probability of you having diabetes is higher.
- Geography – Few countries are listed in the top 1 category affecting diabetes. So, if you stay in one of those countries, you might also have diabetes.
Type 1 Diabetes Complications
Type 1 diabetes complications can be categorised into two types – Short- and long-term complications. Type 1 diabetes complications are associated with maintaining poor blood sugar levels.
Short-term Type 1 Diabetes Complications:
Hypoglycemia: If our body produces insulin at a higher level, it causes low blood sugar, which is known as hypoglycemia. It also occurs when we don't follow scheduled insulin intake after consuming food.
Hypoglycemia also has various stages: If it is cured early, the health will be fine; otherwise, it will lead to heavy complications that might cause life-threatening issues.
Diabetic Ketoacidosis: occurs if the person is affected by type 1 diabetes and due to lack of insulin production in the body. It is the first and foremost indication for the body regarding type 1 diabetes.
Most people will not be aware of the development of diabetes in their bodies. Type 1 diabetes symptoms occur only after all the beta cells are destroyed and immediate actions are taken to control it. When the body has no insulin, it automatically uses the fat to give the body enough energy since glucose will not be available. Once the fat is broken, ketones will be released, which makes acidic blood, causing diabetic ketoacidosis.
Diagnostic Test for Type 1 Diabetes
If there is a higher blood sugar level, there are a lot of type 1 diabetes symptoms that should be shown in your body. In this case, the below tests have to be taken to know which parts are affected and what kind of diabetes mellitus treatment is required to bring it under control.
a) Glycated Haemoglobin (A1C) Test
The glycated haemoglobin is a test that determines the blood sugar level of your body by analysing the protein carried over red blood cells. It detects the sugar level content included in haemoglobin.
Normal - less than 5.7%
Pre-diabetes - 5.7% to 6.4%
Diabetes - 6.5% or higher
Also know about sugar in urine test.
b) Fasting Plasma Glucose
To take this test, fasting is a must. People are not allowed to consume food before the test. This tests the blood sugar level content in the body.
Normal - less than 100 mg/dl
Prediabetes - 100 mg/dl to 125 mg/dl
Diabetes - 126 mg/dl or higher
Also read about is watermelon good for diabetes.
c) Oral Glucose Tolerance Test (OGTT)
The oral glucose tolerance test can be taken after consuming food for 2 hours. This is to analyse the blood sugar level processing in the body.
Normal: less than 140 mg/dl
Prediabetes: 140 mg/dl to 199 mg/dl
Diabetes: more than equal to 200 mg/dl
Also know about pre diabetes levels
Treatment For Type 1 Diabetes
People with type 1 diabetes have a good chance of living long and healthy lives. By keeping a regular check on blood sugar levels your primary care physician will provide you with a target range of numbers which will have to be maintained to remain healthy and complication free. In order to keep their blood sugar under control, people with type 1 diabetes need to inject themselves with insulin and also keep a check on their lifestyle habits. Also know about treatment for diabetes in ayurveda.
One of the most common treatment types for type 1 diabetes is injecting insulin regularly. When discussing insulin with you, your doctor will most likely bring up the following three points:
- The amount of time it takes for something to enter your system and start bringing down your blood sugar is referred to as its "onset."
- "Peak time" refers to the period of time during which insulin is most effective in bringing blood sugar levels down.
- The "duration" refers to how long it continues to function after the "onset" of the effect.
Rapid-acting therapy will begin to take action in around 15 minutes. It has the greatest impact around an hour after you take it, and the benefits last for another two to four hours. Regular or short-acting dosages begin to take effect around half an hour later. It achieves its peak efficacy between 2 and 3 hours and then operates for another 3 to 6 hours. The intermediate-acting drug will reach your blood between two and four hours after the injection. It works best between the hours of four and twelve, and it continues to work between the hours of twelve and eighteen.
Long-acting drugs enter your system gradually over many hours and function for around 24 hours. It's conceivable that your doctor may have you start therapy with two types of insulin provided through injection twice a day. You may need further dosages in the future. The great majority of insulin is sold in a vial, which is a small glass container. You draw it out using a syringe that has a needle connected to the end of it, and then you inject yourself. Some of them come in an already full enclosure. Another way is inhalation. You may also acquire it by wearing a pump, which is a device that administers medicine to your body via a small tube. Your doctor will advise you on the best formulation and administration method for your specific requirements. Also know about best medicine for diabetes.
Also read about how to prevent diabetes
Regular workout and diet control
Regular physical activity is critical in the treatment of type 1 diabetes. However, going for a run every now and again will not address the issue. People with diabetes must ensure that the quantity of insulin they take and the food they consume are in sync with their routine and amount of exercise since the food they eat and the amount of activity they do have a direct influence on their blood sugar. The more you understand your condition by keeping track of it, the better you'll be able to manage it. Monitor your blood sugar levels before, during, and after doing an activity to see how it affects you. Certain foods will boost your glucose levels while others will not. You may either lower your insulin dosage or have a carbohydrate-containing snack to keep it from getting dangerously low.
Check for ketones, which are acids that may form when blood sugar levels are too high. You should do so if your blood sugar is more than 240 mg/dL. If they're OK, you shouldn't have any issues going ahead. If they are high, it is best to skip the workout. You will also need to be aware of how food affects your blood sugar levels. You will be able to build a healthy eating plan that will aid you in maintaining levels that are acceptable for you after you grasp how carbs, lipids, and proteins work. You may begin with the help of a diabetes educator or a qualified nutritionist. Also know about normal fasting blood sugar level.
How to Control Type 1 Diabetes?
When a person has type 1 diabetes, their pancreas cease producing insulin, which is a hormone that assists the body in converting blood sugar into usable energy. If one doesn't have enough insulin in their body, sugar will build up in their blood, which may be harmful to their internal organs and other organs, including your eyes, kidneys, nervous system, and heart. Over time, this build up of sugar develops into diabetes and might result in consequences that are either very severe or potentially fatal.
Diet and lifestyle choices do not have a role in the development of type 1 diabetes in a person. It is a kind of autoimmune disease, in which the healthy cells of the pancreas are targeted by the immune system of the body, which then leads to their depletion. Diabetes type 1 may strike at any time in a person's life, even though it is diagnosed in children and young adults the vast majority of the time.
After receiving a diagnosis of type 1 diabetes, one of the first questions that individuals often inquire about is whether or not there is a cure. There isn’t a known type 1 diabetes cure yet but this condition can be managed. However, there are type 1 diabetes treatment options that can be opted for. Although insulin, proper nutrition, and regular exercise may help control type 1 diabetes, there is no known cure for diabetes at this time. On the other hand, scientists are now conducting research on medicines that may reverse the condition, making it possible for individuals who have type 1 diabetes to have healthy lives without the need for medication. Also know how to reverse prediabetes.
How Close Are We To A Cure?
Understanding cause of diabetes plays a huge role in the treatment for diabetes. The management of type 1 diabetes has been the primary focus of diabetic care for the last century. Patients are now able to maintain control of their blood glucose levels by using insulin injections on a regular basis or an insulin pump, as a result of previous breakthroughs in medical technology.
There are now medications being tested in clinical trials that have the potential to cure type 1 diabetes and restore the body's natural capacity to create insulin. Because of these studies, some patients are now able to live insulin-free, which dramatically improves the quality of life for such individuals.
Also read about sugar free, No Added Sugar and Unsweetened
To maintain diabetes under control, we need to monitor the blood sugar content frequently, and insulin therapy, scheduled treatment must be taken whenever necessary. Glucose monitoring is also a good practice to avoid complications. Healthy eating is a must. Taking carbohydrates and monitoring them should be frequent. High fibre foods help control diabetes. Daily workouts, exercises and physical activity help boost health. These are all the factors that can help us maintain a good blood sugar level if we have type 1 diabetes. Also read about the diabetes in India.
Can one suddenly develop Type 1 Diabetes?
Yes, there are a lot of factors affecting the body's sugar level.
Is Type 1 Diabetes fatal?
If the blood sugar level is not maintained properly, it can lead to life-threatening issues.
Can someone be born with Type 1 Diabetes?
Yes, Type 1 diabetes can be genetic.
What Causes Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition wherein the body’s cells attack themselves by mistake. Due to this process, the beta cells that are responsible for producing insulin in the pancreas are destroyed. Certain individuals have genes that put them at an increased risk of developing type 1 diabetes. Despite having the genes for it, a significant number of individuals will not develop type 1 diabetes throughout their lifetimes. Environmental factors and lifestyle are not a cause for type 1 diabetes. Also know about reversing type 2 diabetes.
Why Do People Lose Weight With Type 1 Diabetes?
When a person has diabetes type 1, their immune system targets the cells in their pancreas that are responsible for producing insulin. As a result of the lack of insulin that is available to transfer glucose into the cells of the body, glucose levels continue to rise in the circulation. After then, the kidneys go to work to get rid of the unneeded sugar by producing more urine. Because the body is unable to use the sugar for energy, it will begin to metabolize fat and muscle instead, which will lead to a reduction in overall body weight. Also read about sugar in urine
This website's content is provided only for educational reasons and is not meant to be a replacement for professional medical advice. Due to individual differences, the reader should contact their physician to decide whether the material is applicable to their case.