Diabetes is a chronic disease that occurs because the pancreas does not manufacture the amount of insulin that the human body needs, or it produces it of a lower quality. Insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas, is the main substance responsible for maintaining proper blood sugar levels. It allows glucose to be transported into cells, so that they produce energy or store glucose until its use is necessary. When it fails, it causes an excessive rise in sugar in the blood (hyperglycemia). In fact, the scientific name for the disease is diabetes mellitus, which means “honey.”
Diabetes affects 6% of the population. The chances of contracting it increase as a person gets older, so that over the age of seventy, about 15% of people suffer from it. It is essential to educate patients to manage their diabetes properly, as it can lead to other diseases as important or more important than diabetes itself: cardiovascular, neurological diseases, retinopathy (an eye condition that can lead to blindness) or nephropathy (a disease kidney). The moment of appearance of the disease, as well as the causes and symptoms that patients present, depend on the type of diabetes being treated.
Type 1 diabetes: The most frequent ages in which it appears are childhood, adolescence and the first years of adult life. It usually occurs abruptly, and many times regardless of a family history. It is due to the progressive destruction of the cells of the pancreas, which are those that produce insulin. This must be administered artificially from the beginning of the disease. Its particular symptoms are an increase in the need to drink and in the amount of urine, the feeling of tiredness and weight loss.
Type 2 diabetes: It generally occurs in older ages and is about ten times more frequent than the previous one. As a general rule, it happens that other people in the family also suffer or have suffered it. It originates due to a low production of insulin, together with the insufficient use of this substance by the cell. Depending on which defect of the two predominates, the patient should be treated with antidiabetic pills or insulin (or a combination of both). It does not usually present any type of discomfort or specific symptoms, so it can go unnoticed by the affected person for a long time.
Gestational diabetes: It is considered occasional diabetes. It can be controlled just like the other types of diabetes. During pregnancy, insulin increases to increase energy reserves. Sometimes this increase does not occur and can lead to pregnancy diabetes. It also has no symptoms and detection is almost always carried out after the routine analysis that all pregnant women undergo from 24 weeks of gestation.
Among the main symptoms of diabetes include:
Frequency when urinating (“wet bed” phenomenon in children).
Weakness and tiredness
Irritability and mood swings.
Feeling sick in the stomach and vomiting.
Cuts and scrapes that do not heal, or that heal very slowly.
Itching or numbness in the hands or feet.
Recurring skin, gum, or bladder infections.
In addition, there are high levels of sugar in the blood and urine.
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