What is diabetes?
Diabetes is a serious and complex condition which can affect the entire body. When someone has diabetes, their body can’t maintain healthy levels of glucose in the blood.
There are three main types of diabetes:
Diabetes is increasing
All types of diabetes are increasing in prevalence; type 2 diabetes is increasing at the fastest rate.
The combination of big changes to diet and the food supply, combined with big changes to physical activity with more sedentary work and less activity, means most populations are seeing more type 2 diabetes.
Genes also play a part with higher risk of type 2 diabetes in Chinese, South Asian, Indian, Pacific Islander and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populations.
What are the symptoms of diabetes?
In type 1 diabetes, symptoms are often sudden and can be life-threatening. Therefore, it is usually diagnosed quite quickly.
In type 2 diabetes, many people have no symptoms at all, while other signs can go unnoticed being seen as part of ‘getting older’. Therefore, by the time symptoms are noticed, complications of diabetes may already be present.
Common symptoms include:
- Being more thirsty than usual
- Passing more urine
- Feeling tired and lethargic
- Always feeling hungry
- Having cuts that heal slowly
- Itching, skin infections
- Blurred vision
- Unexplained weight loss (type 1)
- Gradually putting on weight (type 2)
- Mood swings
- Feeling dizzy
- Leg cramps.
Do the self-assessment now
To find out your risk of developing type 2 diabetes within the next five years, answer the quick questions on the Diabetes Australia calculator.
If you have any queries, or you need further support regarding diabetes, please chat with one of our friendly doctors.
Source: Diabetes Australia
Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.