Type 1 diabetes symptoms often arise quickly and usually means someone may have:
- increased thirst and dehydration
- frequent urination (this may include bedwetting in children who previously did not wet the bed)
- irritability and mood changes
- tiredness and weakness
Speak to your doctor if you notice that you or your child have several of the above symptoms.
Signs of diabetes are different than symptoms of diabetes. Signs are objective measures which may include:
- high blood glucose (sugar) levels
- weight loss
- decreased blood pressure
- increased heart rate
Up to 10% of people with diabetes have type 1 diabetes (the majority of people have type 2 diabetes). Type 1 diabetes usually begins during childhood or adolescence, but also can develop later in life. It occurs when the body’s own immune system destroys the beta cells (the insulin-producing cells) of the pancreas. The result is little or no insulin production. Without insulin the body’s cells cannot absorb glucose, which is required to produce energy. Deprived of energy, the body may also begin to burn its own fat as a substitute, leading to the build-up of harmful chemicals in the blood, known as ketones.
The first symptoms of type 1 diabetes appear when the blood glucose gets too high. In order to diagnose type 1 diabetes, your doctor will order a blood test to check the blood glucose levels.
Diabetes is not curable but it is controllable. Insulin injections are given on a daily basis to help reach blood glucose targets, using an insulin pen or insulin pump. For more information on insulin, click here.
Healthy eating and physical activity, combined with insulin can help people with type 1 diabetes reach healthy blood glucose levels and live long healthy lives.