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Type 1 is essentially an auto-immune condition where your pancreas cannot make insulin, or it makes a very little amount of insulin. The reason for this is due to the body’s immune system attacking the beta cells in the pancreas, which is what produces insulin. T1D represents around 10% of all diabetes cases, according to Diabetes Australia and is one of the most common chronic conditions in childhood.
What’s the difference between T1D and T2D?
These two different types are often confused with each other. The major difference is that T1D is a genetic condition that often shows up in the earlier stages of life. T2D is often associated with lifestyle-related causes and develops over-time.
With type 1, your body attacks the cells in the pancreas and therefore limits and affects the production of insulin. With type 2, your body simply cannot make enough insulin. And if it does, the insulin made, unfortunately, doesn’t work properly.
Why is insulin important?
The importance of insulin for a human body is that it helps blood sugar enter our cells and be used for energy. A lack of insulin would mean that the blood sugar (or glucose) builds up in the bloodstream and the body. The excess glucose will then get washed out of the body through urine and this leads to dehydration.
What causes T1D?
T1D is most commonly developed in young people but can happen at any age. At the moment, there are no links to any exact causes of T1D. However, what we do know at the moment is that T1D is associated with strong genetic links and cannot be prevented. T1D has nothing to do with lifestyle choices or habits. The choice to maintain a healthy and mindful lifestyle will still help to manage all types of diabetes, which includes T1D.
Usually how your doctor confirms T1D diagnosis is through a blood test to check and see if you have auto-antibodies.
If there is no prevention at the moment, what can I do to treat T1D?
If you don’t feel good in general or think there is a chance you could have diabetes, don’t be afraid to go see your doctor to test your blood sugar levels. Untreated diabetes can be fatal and can lead to long-term health issues.
For T1D management tips, explore our T1D Management category
IBD Medical was born in Sydney Australia. Our mission is to help improve the lives of people living with diabetes by providing the best possible support products and information.
Remember to always seek advice from your medical practioner before changing anything about your diabetes management. The above information is not medical advice