Do You Have Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes?

Woman with diabetes giving herself an insulin injection

Diabetes is a common disease carries both minor and major health risks. Have you ever wondered if you may have diabetes based on your health and energy levels? It is important to know if you have or are predisposed to the condition, since it affects how you live your life and could lead to significant illness or even death if left untreated. Both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes have similar traits, but they do have differences as well. Here are details on both and information to help determine if you have or may get diabetes in the future.

Comparing Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes

Both Type I and Type II diabetes have the same common issue. They affect blood sugar levels, which leads to health troubles, organ problems, and lack of energy. When it comes to the differences between the two, Type I is usually diagnosed during childhood years while Type 2 is often prevalent in adults over 30 years of age. However, this is just a common descriptor. For instance, there have been and continue to be teens that get diagnosed with Type 2.

Aside from typical age discoveries, excess body weight can often lean towards Type 2 conditions, but exceptions can occur, and it is not always a true characteristic. For Type 2 diabetes, increased weight is not a sign of the condition, but being underweight can be. That also does not mean you have Type 2 diabetes, but it is very common with people that are underweight for their age and activity levels.

Type 2 diabetes is a condition where the body’s immune system attacks beta cells in the pancreas, which are responsible for producing natural insulin. If Type 1 is left untreated, the pancreas will stop producing insulin altogether.

Type 2 diabetes does not attack beta cells in the pancreas, but it does stop the body from producing insulin. In other words, the condition develops insulin resistance. It goes straight to halting insulin production rather than stopping the source that produces it. To counteract this, the body attempts to produce more beta cells, which leads to too much strain on the cells and that leads to their destruction. This ultimately reduces insulin production.

Glucose and Diabetes

Your body needs glucose to maintain usable energy levels and proper organ functionality. That glucose is produced by the insulin that is developed by the pancreas. The body breaks down the carbohydrates and sugars from food to make the glucose. Glucose is needed to fuel your body’s cells. If the insulin is lacking, it cannot absorb the glucose to make energy for the cells, thereby affecting the organs and your energy.

Diagnosing Diabetes

There are a lot of symptoms that represent diabetes, but it first must be diagnosed or perhaps it is just another type of health problem. Regardless, there are several signs to watch out for. Here is a breakdown.

Diabetes symptoms and treatment

Signs of Type 1 Diabetes

Do you feel hungry frequently? Are you losing a lot of weight rapidly? Do you suffer from blurry vision like seeing cloudiness or halos around lights? If so, you may have Type 1 diabetes or have the potential to be diagnosed with it in the near future.

Type 1 diabetes can have signs that include but are not limited to the following:

  • Frequent urination
  • Frequent hunger
  • Numbness and/or tingling in the feet
  • Blurred vision
  • Rapid weight loss
  • Dry skin
  • Rapid breathing

If you notice that you only have one or two of the above symptoms, it may just be a minor health problem like sickness, reduced vitamin intake, improper diet, too much liquid intake, or other common causes. If you appear to have "hit the jackpot" here and suffer from most of them, there is a fairly good chance that you may have Type I diabetes or are "nearing its invasion."

Signs of Type 2 Diabetes

Are you rapidly gaining weight? Do you fail to have the motivation to do activities or be active? Are you thirsty a lot? These and several other signs can represent type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes conditions. Many symptoms are similar or the same as Type 2 symptoms, but there are a few differences.

Type 2 diabetes signs may include but are not limited to the following: 

  • Frequent urination
  • Frequent hunger
  • Increased thirst
  • Numbness and/or tingling in the feet
  • Blurred vision
  • Rapid weight gain
  • Frequent bacterial infections
  • Frequent yeast infections
  • Vaginal thrush

If you have just a couple of the listed issues or some are not that frequent, it may just be other health issues. If you notice that most problems on the list fit you to the tee, then you may have type 2 diabetes or will have it soon.

Are You Predisposed To Diabetes?

Aside from the potential signs of diabetes, other elements can indicate your "mark" to get the condition. For instance, a family history of diabetes can significantly increase your chances. Environmental factors have also been considered to play a role in Type 1 development, although there are no documented facts to support it. Overweight people are more prone to get Type 2 diabetes, and lack of exercise and physical activity can also lead to the condition.

Common Diseases and Health Problems Caused By Diabetes

Both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes can cause many health problems if the blood sugar level is not monitored and treated. Type 1 is more aggressive and requires frequent care. Type 2 diabetes develops gradually and progresses slowly so routine checking and treatment are not as frequent. With both types, health problems and conditions can develop since the organs struggle to turn insulin into glucose.

A few health diseases caused by diabetes include:

  • Eye disease (diabetic retinopathy)
  • Nerve damage (diabetic neuropathy)
  • Chronic kidney disease (diabetic nephropathy)

Some potential diabetes health problems include:

  • Heart attacks
  • Strokes
  • Blindness
  • Nerve damage
  • Erectile dysfunction

If you are still reading this, congratulations! You are taking diabetes seriously and want to ensure you stay healthy, as well as determine your chances of getting the disease. As you can see, there are a lot of signs and symptoms that reflect the condition or provide early warning signs that you may get it. If you found this information matches your situation, be sure to see your doctor and talk about checking for diabetes. It's a condition that doesn’t go away, but it can be treated so you can live a happy and healthy life—spending it with the ones you love and enjoy.

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