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Diabetes

Diabetes is a complex disease but can be treated. Each person is unique and so is their journey living with diabetes. The disease requires continuous management to ensure quality of life and to prevent serious complications that may be life-threatening.

There are three main types of diabetes

Type 1 diabetes can develop at any age but occurs mostly in children and adolescents. When you have type 1 diabetes, your body produces very little or no insulin, which means that you need daily insulin injections to maintain blood glucose levels. Type 1 diabetes is an auto-immune condition where cells in the pancreas are destroyed by the body and is not caused by eating too much sugar. It cannot be cured, and people with Type 1 diabetes must inject themselves with insulin to survive.

Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes, accounting for around 90% of all diabetes cases. It is characterised by insulin resistance, where the body does not fully respond to insulin. Because insulin cannot work properly, blood glucose levels keep rising, releasing more and more insulin (hyperglycaemia). Type 2 diabetes is also associated with high blood pressure and increased cholesterol and blood fats levels.

Gestational (GDM) is a type of diabetes that consists of high blood glucose during pregnancy and may lead to complications for mother and child. GDM usually disappears after pregnancy, but women and their children are at increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes later in life.

The symptoms of Type 1 and Type 2 are similar and include:

  • Excessive thirst and dry mouth
  • Frequent urination
  • Lack of energy, tiredness
  • Slow healing wounds
  • Recurrent infections in the skins
  • Blurred vision
  • Tingling or numbness in hands and feet.
  • Hunger
  • Dehydration
  • Weight loss or gain
  • Itching skin
  • Increased susceptibility to infections.

Prevention of diabetes

  • There’s no known prevention for Type 1 diabetes, but with good management and healthcare support, people with Type 1 diabetes can live a normal live.
  • Type 2 diabetes can mostly be prevented through healthy diet and regular physical activity.

Intercare healthcare professionals may help with early diagnosis and treatment. Our doctors can also refer to a wide network of diabetes health specialists. The following Intercare health professionals have a special interest in diabetes management.