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Diabetes Health Center

Type 1 Diabetes

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Understanding type 1 diabetes is the first step to managing it. Get information on type 1 diabetes causes, risk factors, warning signs, and prevention tips.

What Is Type 1 Diabetes?

Normally, the body's immune system fights off foreign invaders like viruses or bacteria. But for unknown reasons, in people with type 1 diabetes, the immune system attacks various cells in the body.

 

Symptoms of type 1 diabetes usually develop quickly, over a few days to weeks, and are caused by blood sugar levels rising above the normal range (hyperglycemia).

 

You can inherit a tendency to develop type 1 diabetes, but most people who have the disease have no family history of it.

 

If a person is not in ketoacidosis, the American Diabetes Association's criteria for symptoms, a medical history, a physical exam, and blood tests are used to diagnose type 1 diabetes.

 

Type 1 diabetes requires lifelong treatment to keep blood sugar levels within a target range.

 

Contrary to what you may have heard, there is no single "diabetes diet."

 

There are many forms of insulin to treat diabetes. They are classified by how fast they start to work and how long their effects last. 

Currently there is no way to prevent type 1 diabetes, but ongoing studies are exploring ways to prevent diabetes in those who are most likely to develop it.

 

Type 1 Diabetes Tools

See animated illustrations of how type 1 diabetes works.

WebMD offers a pictorial overview of the symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment of type 1 diabetes.

This type 1 diabetes assessment was designed to explore and evaluate your personal health and lifestyle history to help you manage your health and your family’s health better.

Test your Type 1 Diabetes knowledge.

Is This Normal? Get the Facts Fast!

Check Your Blood Sugar Level Now
What type of diabetes do you have?
Your gender:

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or
Answer:
Low
0-69
Normal
70-130
High
131+

Your level is currently

If the level is below 70 or you are experiencing symptoms such as shaking, sweating or difficulty thinking, you will need to raise the number immediately. A quick solution is to eat a few pieces of hard candy or 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey. Recheck your numbers again in 15 minutes to see if the number has gone up. If not, repeat the steps above or call your doctor.

People who experience hypoglycemia several times in a week should call their health care provider. It's important to monitor your levels each day so you can make sure your numbers are within the range. If you are pregnant always consult with your health care provider.

Congratulations on taking steps to manage your health.

However, it's important to continue to track your numbers so that you can make lifestyle changes if needed. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

Your level is high if this reading was taken before eating. Aim for 70-130 before meals and less than 180 two hours after meals.

Even if your number is high, it's not too late for you to take control of your health and lower your blood sugar.

One of the first steps is to monitor your levels each day. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

Did You Know Your Lifestyle Choices
Affect Your Blood Sugar?

Use the Blood Glucose Tracker to monitor
how well you manage your blood sugar over time.

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This tool is not intended for women who are pregnant.

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