Glucose plays a vital role in the human body, including being your brain’s source of fuel and providing energy for cells in the muscles and tissues. Although your body needs glucose or sugar to obtain full function, too much of the same can result in health problems such as diabetes. This medical condition affects how the body utilizes blood sugar. Diabetes mellitus is the most common type that develops due to high blood sugar levels and can be classified into different categories depending on the causes. Below are the various kinds of Germantown diabetes and its causes.
Types of diabetes
Type 1 diabetes
The pancreas is a small organ in your body that contains cells that produce insulin – a hormone that regulates sugar or glucose levels in the blood. Naturally, the immune system fights harmful bacteria and viruses. However, with type 1 diabetes, the body’s defense system attacks the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. As a result, your body is left with little or no insulin, causing a build-up of sugar in the bloodstream. Patients with this type of diabetes experiences sudden symptoms such as fatigue, increased thirst, and frequent urination. While its cause remains unknown, factors like family history increase one’s risk.
Pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes
You are said to have pre-diabetes when blood sugar levels are higher than usual but not too elevated to be described as type 2 diabetes. When left unattended to, pre-diabetes can lead to type 2 diabetes – a condition where body cells become resistant to insulin and the pancreas fails to produce more insulin to overcome the resistance. Since the cells do not absorb the sugar, glucose builds up in the bloodstream. The causes of type 2 diabetes have not been established, but certain factors such as obesity increase your chances for this health problem. Healthy life choices like regular physical exercise may help prevent type 2 diabetes.
This type of diabetes develops during pregnancy when the placenta produces hormones to sustain a pregnancy. These hormones make cells resistant to insulin, affecting the utilization of blood sugar. The pancreas responds to this by producing more insulin, but this goes on for a limited period. Little sugar is absorbed when the pancreas fails to produce more insulin, and much remains in the blood, causing gestational diabetes. If you have gestational diabetes, your doctor may recommend oral medications alongside observing a healthy diet and physical activity.
Complications that can result from diabetes
Complications develop gradually when you have had diabetes for a long time or when you do not manage the problem. In the long run, the difficulties may be disabling or life-threatening. They include:
- Nerve damage. High glucose levels can damage the capillaries responsible for nerve nourishment in the legs, resulting in symptoms like pain, numbness, and tingling at the tips of toes or fingers. Neuropathy can cause erectile dysfunction in men.
- Cardiovascular disease. Patients with diabetes have an increased risk for cardiovascular problems such as stroke, heart disease, and coronary artery disease.
Since type 2 diabetes may fail to present symptoms during its onset stages, it necessitates regular medical check-ups to ensure the blood sugar is at a healthy level. To learn more about diabetes, consult with your specialist at Doctors First today.