About Type 2 Diabetes

Topics: Diabetes mellitus, Glucose tolerance test, Blood sugar Pages: 5 (1441 words) Published: January 8, 2013
About type 2 diabetes
Around 2.6 million people in the UK have been diagnosed with diabetes. About nine in 10 of these people have type 2 diabetes. It usually affects people over the age of 40, but can develop at any age. People of African-Caribbean or South Asian origin are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes. It usually affects them earlier in life, from about the age of 25. Type 2 diabetes is becoming more common, particularly in children. Type 2 diabetes develops when your body can’t produce enough insulin or if your body doesn’t respond to insulin as it should. Insulin regulates the level of glucose in your blood. Glucose is a simple form of sugar found in foods and sugary drinks. It’s absorbed by your body as a natural part of digestion and is carried around your body in your blood. When glucose reaches your body tissues, such as muscle cells, it's absorbed and converted into energy. Insulin is secreted into your blood by your pancreas, which is a gland located behind your stomach. If your cells don't respond properly to insulin, it can cause glucose to build up in your blood. This is called insulin resistance. If this happens, your pancreas needs to produce more and more insulin to overcome the resistance and control your blood glucose levels. Types of diabetes There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2. There are about two million people in the UK who have diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is the common form, affecting nine out of every 10 people with diabetes. Symptoms of type 2 diabetes Many people with type 2 diabetes have no obvious symptoms. It's often discovered during a routine medical check-up with your GP.If you do have symptoms of type 2 diabetes, you may: •pass more urine than usual

be constantly thirsty
have unexplained weight loss
be extremely tired
have blurred vision
have itchy skin around your genitals or get regular infections, such as thrush •notice that wounds such as cuts heal slowly
If you have any of these symptoms, see your GP. nitially, some people find they don’t have any symptoms. So if you think you may be at risk of type 2 diabetes, speak to your GP about having a screening blood test. Complications of type 2 diabetes If type 2 diabetes isn’t diagnosed or controlled properly, you can develop blood glucose levels that are either too high (hyperglycaemia) or too low (hypoglycaemia). Hyperglycaemia If type 2 diabetes is poorly controlled or you get an infection, glucose can build up in your blood and rise to high levels. This can cause you to: •be thirsty

pass urine excessively
have blurred vision
feel tired
Very rarely, if you become dehydrated and your blood glucose rises to very high levels, you can develop a condition called hyperosmolar hyperglycaemic state. This can cause you to become drowsy and potentially unconscious. Hyperosmolar hyperglycaemic state is a medical emergency and needs to be treated in hospital. In the long-term, uncontrolled high blood glucose levels can increase your risk of: •kidney failure

nerve damage
heart disease
Sometimes, if your medication is too strong or you miss a meal, your blood glucose levels can become too low (hypoglycaemia). This only happens if you’re taking certain medicines such as gliclazide (or others of the same type), repaglinide or insulin (of any type). If your blood glucose is low, you may go pale, feel sweaty and become confused. If you develop hypoglycaemia, it’s important to eat or drink something containing glucose, for example fruit juice or some sweets. Causes of type 2 diabetes

There are several risk factors that make you more likely to develop type 2 diabetes, including if you: •are overweight or obese – in particular, if you’re an 'apple shape' with lots of fat around your abdomen (tummy) •have a close family member with the condition

are of African-Caribbean or South-Asian origin
are over 40 – your risk increases with age
have high...
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