What is type 1 diabetes?
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that causes the body’s pancreas to stop producing insulin. Type 1 diabetes is usually diagnosed in childhood, adolescence or early adulthood. While it can be diagnosed in people who are over 40 years old, this is very rare.
There are both signs and symptoms of type 1 diabetes: symptoms are experienced by the person affected by the disease; signs can be detected by someone other than the person affected by the disease.
Symptoms of type 1 diabetes
The most common symptoms of type 1 diabetes are frequent urination and excessive thirst. Urinating is the body’s way of trying to get rid of extra glucose in the blood. As a result of urinating very frequently, people can become very dehydrated and feel the need to drink more fluids than normal.
Other symptoms of type 1 diabetes include:
- Irritability and mood changes
- Tiredness and weakness
- Fruity odour on the breath; this is caused by high ketones in the blood
Contact your healthcare team immediately, if you notice that you or your child have several of the above symptoms.
Signs of type 1 diabetes
The signs of diabetes include:
- High blood sugar levels
- Unexplained weight loss
- A fast heart rate