diabetes type 1

How do I live with Type 1 diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes is a complex condition that requires daily management, effort, and planning. The basic difference between the two types of diabetes lies in the difference in the production of insulin and glucagon (the two hormones responsible for balancing our sugar level). It might be overwhelming to understand the disease from the start, let alone live with it. Also, considering the age of patients dropping down and the increasing number of patients worldwide, we have curated some tips that can help you manage your type 1 diabetes.

Keep a check of your blood sugar

  • Checking your blood sugar with a glucometer and/or using a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) is crucial to managing diabetes and preventing complications. Try to at least check your blood sugar before and after meals and before you go to sleep. It’s important to treat high blood sugar as soon as possible.

Prioritize your medication schedule

  • Follow your healthcare provider’s instructions for taking your insulin and other medications (if applicable). It’s important to see your endocrinologist regularly to be sure that your Type 1 diabetes management plan is working. Don’t be afraid to ask them specific questions.
  • See your other providers regularly, especially your eye doctor. It can cause complications in various areas of your body, but especially in your eyes. It’s important to see your eye doctor (ophthalmologist) at least once a year so that they can check the health of your eyes.

Have a sick-day plan handy

  • Talk with your endocrinologist about how to take care of yourself and manage your diabetes when you’re sick. Since illness can trigger diabetes-related ketoacidosis (DKA), it’s important to know what to do if you get sick before it happens so that you’re prepared.

Find Your Support Group

  • Connecting with other people who have the disease—whether in person or online—can help you feel less alone in living with and managing diabetes. People with diabetes are two to three times more likely to have depression and are 20% more likely to be diagnosed with anxiety than those without diabetes. Living with a chronic condition that requires constant care can be overwhelming. It’s important to talk to a mental health professional if you’re experiencing signs of depression and/or anxiety.
Type 1 diabetes infographic

Can type-1 diabetes live a normal life?

Currently, there isn’t a cure for this disease. However, what we know about the condition is constantly evolving; new technologies and medicines are being developed, and researchers are making important breakthroughs. Right now, people of all ages are leading full, healthy lives with this disease.

What is it caused by?

It is thought to be caused by an autoimmune reaction (the body attacks itself by mistake). This reaction destroys the cells in the pancreas that make insulin, called beta cells. This process can go on for months or years before any symptoms appear.

Who is at high risk?

Known risk factors include family history. Having a parent, brother, or sister with type 1 diabetes. Age: You can get type 1 diabetes at any age, but it usually develops in children, teens, or young adults.

What is a good diet?

In the disease, the pancreas can no longer release insulin. The high blood sugar that results can lead to complications such as kidney, nerve, and eye damage, as well as cardiovascular disease.

Glycemic index and glycemic load are scientific terms used to measure the impact of food on blood sugar. Foods with a low glycemic load (index) raise blood sugar modestly and thus are better choices for people with diabetes.

Meal timing is very important for people with the disease. Meals must match insulin doses. Eating meals with a low glycemic load (index) makes meal timing easier. Low-glycemic-load meals raise blood sugar slowly and steadily, leaving plenty of time for the body (or the injected insulin dose) to respond. Skipping a meal or eating late puts a person at risk for low blood sugar (hypoglycemia).

If you or your child are experiencing symptoms of the disease, such as extreme thirst and frequent urination, see your healthcare provider as soon as possible. If you or your child have been diagnosed with diabetes, you’ll need to see your endocrinologist multiple times a year throughout your life to make sure your diabetes management is working well for you.

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