What Is Diabetes Mellitus?

Diabetes mellitus is a condition where the body is unable to properly use and store sugar (glucose), resulting in blood sugar level rising higher than normal.

What Are The Different Types of Diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes (90% to 95% of all cases of diabetes) occurs because the body does not produce enough of a particular hormone, insulin, and is also unable to use insulin properly. This hormone, insulin, is produced by the pancreas and it helps sugar to enter the cells in the body. Type 2 diabetes usually occurs in people who are over 40 years of age, overweight or obese, and/or have a family history of diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes (5 to 10% of all cases of diabetes) is due to little or no production of insulin in the body and mainly occurs in children and adolescents.

Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that occurs in the late second or third trimester of pregnancy. High blood sugar level in pregnancy can pose risks for both the mother and the unborn baby.

What Symptoms Does Someone With Diabetes Have?

Symptoms of high blood sugar level include: 

  • Increased thirst and urination
  • Tiredness or fatigue
  • Blurred vision
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • More frequent infections
  • Slow-healing cut and sores

How Is The Diagnosis of Diabetes Made?

The diagnosis of diabetes is made via a blood test that looks at the blood sugar level.

Why Is The Treatment of Diabetes So Important?

Treatment of diabetes is very important as high blood sugar level over time can lead to a host of complications including: 

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Blindness
  • Kidney failure
  • Nerve damage and blood vessel disease that may require a leg amputation
  • Impotence in men

Controlling blood sugar levels will reduce the risk of development and/or slow down the progression of complications.