Essay about Diabetes Is An Autoimmune Disease

Essay about Diabetes Is An Autoimmune Disease

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Type 1, or Juvenile, Diabetes is an autoimmune disease which causes the body to attack the pancreas eventually halting the production of insulin and affects 5-10% of the American population (ADA 2012). This type of diabetes mellitus is typically diagnosed in children and teens, but can also develop in adults. The signs and symptoms of diabetes can vary from person to person, some more severe than others. While there are effective ways of managing diabetes, controlling the disease is a challenge due to several factors.
Symptoms of type 1 diabetes can go undetected or seem to come on rapidly because they went unnoticed. An individual in early stages of type 1 diabetes may feel fatigued or have blurred vision. A parent may notice that a child is losing weight despite having an increased appetite. There may be an awareness of frequent urination which would seem to be a natural cause to extra fluid intake due to increased thirst. These symptoms can also occur once diabetes has been diagnosed and lack of proper management causes blood glucose levels to rise. More serious symptoms of diabetes may present, such as abnormal breathing, dry skin, nausea or vomiting. These can be symptoms of diabetes alone or a more severe diabetes-related condition called ketoacidosis. (MedlinePlus 2015)
Type 1 diabetes is strongly related to heredity through the passing of genes. “There are environmental roles in the development of type 1 diabetes, factors such as food, viruses, and toxins.” (NIDDK 2014) Once the autoimmune response has been triggered the body will start to attack parts of the pancreas, more specifically the beta cells, and destroys them. This destruction prevents the pancreas from making insulin to maintain the balance of blood glucose l...

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Poor diabetes management can create complications as the individual ages. Diabetes can lead to neuropathy, poor circulation, cardiac risks, and damage to the kidneys, eyes or feet. Uncontrolled diabetes can cause extreme risks factors during pregnancy; high blood sugars can cause serious or fatal conditions for both the mother and child. (MayoClinic 2014)
Type 1 diabetes is a serious health condition which good management is crucial. It is important to work with a good team of medical professionals including an endocrinologist, educator, and dietitian to help keep blood glucose levels in check and maintain a proper diet. Receiving regular blood work to check to ensure proper control is being maintained is a valuable part of diabetes care. While this disease can be life threatening, it is possible to live a long, healthy and most importantly normal life.

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