Diabetes Info and Links

So, in posting about Princess Punk’s Diabetes, I thought it might be a good idea to put a page on here with some basic general information and links to some really helpful sites.

 Let’s start with a side-by-side comparison of the two major types of Diabetes Mellitus. Gestational Diabetes is also considered a type of DM but tends to model itself after one or the other of these two types.

Type 1 Diabetes
  • Type 1 Diabetes results from the body’s failure to produce insulin, and presently requires the person to inject insulin. (Also referred to as insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, IDDM for short, and juvenile diabetes.)
  • Onset is generally sudden and can occur at any age, to any body type and is an auto-immune disorder.
  • There is no known preventive measure against type 1 diabetes, which causes approximately 10% of diabetes mellitus cases in North America and Europe. Most affected people are otherwise healthy and of a healthy weight when onset occurs. Type 1 accounts for the majority of DM cases in children.
  • Blood glucose levels must be carefully monitored and are regulated by subcutaneous insulin through either injection or insulin pump.
  • Common short term complications can include coma or seizure due to low blood glucose levels, diabetic ketoacidosis due to uncontrolled high blood sugar, weight loss, fatigue, irritability and dizziness.
  • Long term complications of Type 1 affect major organs in the body including the heart, blood vessels, nerves, eyes and kidneys. Gastroparesis due to nerve damage in the digestive tract and nephropathy leading to kidney failure are two of the most serious complications.

 

Type 2 Diabetes
  • Type 2 Diabetes results from insulin resistance, a condition in which cells fail to use insulin properly, sometimes combined with an absolute insulin deficiency. (Formerly referred to as non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, NIDDM for short, and adult-onset diabetes.)
  • Onset is generally gradual, occurs mostly in adults and is largely affected by body habitus (favoring overweight and obese), activity level and diet.
  • Type 2 diabetes is due primarily to lifestyle factors and genetics. With the rising levels of poor diets and obesity in the US and other developed countries, Type 2 diagnoses have increased significantly in the past 10 years including the prevalence of Type 2 in children.
  • Blood glucose levels can be regulated with weight loss, careful attention to diet and regular exercise.
  • As Type 2 is a more gradual disease process, short term complications are similar to Type 1 but are much less common.
  • Long term complications can include blindness and low-vision due to glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy, peripheral neuropathy and vascular problems including cardiovascular disease. Vascular and neuropathic problems can often create problems with non-healing wounds on upper extremities and persistent ulcers on legs and feet leading to amputation.

Some great links that really helped us a lot-

The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. They’re the ones behind all those Mary Tyler Moore ads on TV. I had no IDEA how much they do for research, advocacy and education. A truly amazing organization.

This is the summer camp Princess Punk has attended 2 years running. The kids spend 2 weeks in Eastern New Hampshire, doing all those fantastic camp things kids are supposed to do. Except that all the kids and most of the counselors have Type 1 Diabetes. The staff includes nutritionists, nurses and an endocrinologist. They teach the kids how to better manage their disease all while camping, hiking, swimming, fishing and more. It was a life-changing experience for the Princess and we are already saving the whopping $1500 bucks for her to go again next summer.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

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    Jul 31, 2013 @ 15:03:08

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