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What Is Diabetes Mellitus

Diabetes Mellitus - IA

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Diabetes mellitus is a serious metabolic disorder and more than 50 million of the country’s population is suffering from it. What makes this graver is that many people are not even aware of what diabetes is all about or what its symptoms are, so to be able to tell if they themselves are suffering from it.

Hence, the focus of this piece is to spread awareness amongst people regarding diabetes mellitus – the growing bane of the modern world.

What it is

Diabetes specialists in Delhi explain diabetes mellitus as a chronic and lifelong ailment that affect the body’s ability to use up energy from the foods we eat. Diabetes mellitus is of three types, as per diabetes doctors in Delhi, namely – Type 1 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes and Gestational diabetes.  

Sugar from food is the main source of energy for the cells in the body and diabetes can hamper their uptake. In a normal case, when we eat food, the sugars and carbohydrates from these food items is broken down into glucose, which is what fuels the body’s cells and tissues.

However, for glucose to do that, it requires insulin, a naturally occurring hormone that is secreted by the pancreas in our bodies. Diabetes occurs when 1) the body does not make enough insulin, 2) it cannot use the insulin produced, or 3) a combination of both of the above.

Type 1 diabetes – It is the condition wherein the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas are damaged or do not produce enough insulin as required by the body, causing the individual to be diabetic. Diabetes specialists in Delhi NCR further explain that type 1 diabetes patients require insulin injections to keep their blood glucose levels in control.

Type 2 diabetes – In this condition, even if the pancreas produce insulin, it is either insufficient or doesn’t get used. Unlike type 1, type 2 diabetes, in some patients, can be controlled through a combination of diet, exercises and lifestyle changes.

Gestational diabetes – This type of diabetes occurs when the level of blood glucose in women becomes high during pregnancy. The hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy also affect the insulin in the body, causing the blood glucose levels to rise. 

 Symptoms of Diabetes Mellitus

The symptoms of diabetes mostly depend on how much the blood sugar level in one’s body has elevated. In some patients, mostly those with type 2 diabetes, the symptoms do not become prominent until at a later stage, while in type 1 diabetes patients, the symptoms come to the fore quickly and become more severe.

As per experts in diabetes clinics in Delhi, the common signs and symptoms of diabetes mellitus in patients include: –

  • Extreme hunger
  • Frequent urination
  • Increased thirst
  • Unexplained loss in weight
  • Fatigue
  • Blurred vision
  • Irritability
  • Ketones in urine
  • Frequent infections
  • Slow-healing sores

 Causes/risk factors of diabetes mellitus

The causes behind diabetes may vary for individual to individual depending on what type of diabetes they are suffering from. However, the risk factors for these types are majorly the same, including: –

Age – Although diabetes mellitus can affect anyone irrespective of their age, type 1 diabetes is more common in people below 30 years whereas type 2 affects people over 40 years of age or more. Pregnant women above 25 years of age can also fall prey to diabetes.

Family history – As noticed by diabetes specialists in Delhi, for people who had one or both of their parents suffer from diabetes, the chances of they themselves suffering from it are high.  

Obesity – Amore common risk factor for type 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes, obesity or elevated fatty tissues in the body makes an individual insulin resistant. Despite this, non-obese people suffer from diabetes mellitus too.

Sedentary lifestyle – Sedentary lifestyle refers to an inactive way of life. This could happen due to personal reasons such as laziness or desk-bound jobs. Being inactive increases the fat deposition in the body, making people obese. Activity helps the body use the glucose better, and maintain weight.

Among the more specific risk factors leading to a particular type of diabetes, a few have been explained here: –

Type 1 diabetes

  • Pancreatic disorder or infections – Any ailment, disorder or infection of the pancreas that inhibits its normal functioning and the production of insulin, could lead to diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes

  • Gestational diabetes – Women who had developed gestational diabetes during their pregnancy are more at risk of suffering from type 2 diabetes.
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome – As per diabetes specialists in Delhi NCR, women with PCOS also have a higher chance of developing type 2 diabetes.
  • High blood pressure – High blood pressure or blood pressure above the 140/90 has also been associated to type 2 diabetes.
  • Insulin resistance – It is the condition wherein the body cells do not respond to insulin, which prevents them from using up glucose thus increasing the blood sugar level in the body.

Gestational diabetes  

Glucose intolerance – Glucose intolerance increases the chances of women developing this type of diabetes during pregnancy.

Diabetes mellitus at an advanced stage can lead to several chronic disorders such as cardiovascular disorders and also cause damage to kidney or nerves. Diabetes is a lifelong problem, but with early diagnosis and proper treatment, this ailment can both be delayed as well as prevented. However, for that to happen, it is important that people become more aware of this disease.  

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