Wednesday, 06 July 2022
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What is Diabetes

Diabetes is a lifelong condition that causes a person's blood sugar level to become too high. This flyer will provide you with lots of information about the conditions, symptoms and treatment.

Diabetes is a lifelong condition that causes a person's blood sugar level to become too high.

There are 2 main types of diabetes:

  • type 1 diabetes – where the body's immune system attacks and destroys the cells that produce insulin
  • type 2 diabetes – where the body does not produce enough insulin, or the body's cells do not react to insulin

Type 2 diabetes is far more common than type 1. In the UK, around 90% of all adults with diabetes have type 2.

During pregnancy, some women have such high levels of blood glucose that their body is unable to produce enough insulin to absorb it all. This is known as gestational diabetes.

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What is diabetes - video

A short introduction from the Liverpool Diabetes Partnership.

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NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NHS DPP)

The Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NHS DPP) identifies those at high risk and refers them onto a behaviour change programme.

When to see a doctor

Visit your GP as soon as possible if you experience the main symptoms of diabetes, which include:

  • feeling very thirsty
  • peeing more frequently than usual, particularly at night
  • feeling very tired
  • weight loss and loss of muscle bulk
  • itching around the penis or vagina, or frequent episodes of thrush
  • cuts or wounds that heal slowly
  • blurred vision

Type 1 diabetes can develop quickly over weeks or even days.

Many people have type 2 diabetes for years without realising because the early symptoms tend to be general.

Type 1 diabetes

Type 1 diabetes causes the level of glucose (sugar) in your blood to become too high.

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Type 2 diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is a common condition that causes the level of glucose (sugar) in the blood to become too high.

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Health and care videos

Health and Care Video Library

We provide clinicians, patients, their families and carers with easily understandable information in an easily accessible way.

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ORCHA mobile apps

ORCHA is a health app evaluation and advisor organisation. It can help you find mobile apps to learn more information about diabetes. Tap on the image below to go the the app directory.

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Type 1 diabetes

Type 1 diabetes causes the level of glucose (sugar) in your blood to become too high.

Type 1 diabetes causes the level of glucose (sugar) in your blood to become too high. It happens when your body cannot produce enough of a hormone called insulin, which controls blood glucose. You need daily injections of insulin to keep your blood glucose levels under control. Managing type 1 diabetes can take time to get used to, but you can still do all the things you enjoy. 

Type 1 diabetes is not linked with age or being overweight – this is type 2 diabetes.

Symptoms

See your GP if you have symptoms of type 1 diabetes:

  • feeling very thirsty
  • peeing more than usual, particularly at night
  • feeling very tired
  • losing weight without trying
  • thrush that keeps coming back
  • blurred vision
  • cuts and grazes that are not healing

Type 1 diabetes symptoms can come on quickly, particularly in children.

Getting tested for type 1 diabetes

Your GP will do a urine test and might check your blood glucose (sugar) level.

If they think you might have diabetes, they may advise you to go to hospital for an assessment with the diabetes team or they may arrange for the blood tests to be done in the community setting.

This page has been amended by the Diabetes Team from Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.



Content provided by NHS.uk

Find information and advice on health conditions, symptoms, healthy living, medicines and how to get help.



Published on Mon, 12 Jul 2021 10:49:44 GMT
Modified on Mon, 13 Jun 2022 10:34:34 GMT

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Type 2 diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is a common condition that causes the level of glucose (sugar) in the blood to become too high.

Type 2 diabetes is a common condition that causes the level of glucose (sugar) in the blood to become too high.

  • It can cause symptoms like excessive thirst, needing to pee a lot and tiredness. It can also increase your risk of getting serious problems with your eyes, heart and nerves.
  • It's a lifelong condition that can affect your everyday life. You may need to change your diet, take medicines and have regular check-ups.
  • It's caused by problems with a chemical in the body (hormone) called insulin. It's often linked to being overweight or inactive, or having a family history of type 2 diabetes.

Symptoms

Many people have type 2 diabetes without realising. This is because symptoms do not necessarily make you feel unwell.

Symptoms of type 2 diabetes include:

  • peeing more than usual, particularly at night
  • feeling thirsty all the time
  • feeling very tired
  • losing weight without trying to
  • itching around your penis or vagina, or repeatedly getting thrush
  • cuts or wounds taking longer to heal
  • blurred vision

You're more at risk of developing type 2 diabetes if you:

  • are over 40 (or 25 for south Asian people)
  • have a close relative with diabetes (such as a parent, brother or sister)
  • are overweight or obese
  • are of Asian, African-Caribbean or black African origin (even if you were born in the UK)

Diagnosis

Type 2 diabetes is often diagnosed following blood or urine tests for something else.

However, you should see a GP straight away if you have any symptoms of diabetes.

To find out if you have type 2 diabetes, you usually have to go through the following steps:

  1. See a GP about your symptoms.
  2. The GP will check your urine and arrange a blood test to check your blood sugar levels. It usually takes about 1 to 2 days for the results to come back.
  3. If you have diabetes, the GP will explain the test results and what will happen next.

If you're diagnosed with diabetes

What the GP will discuss with you during your appointment depends on the diagnosis and the treatment they recommend.

Generally, they'll talk to you about:

  • what diabetes is
  • what high blood sugar means for your health
  • whether you need to take medicine
  • your diet and exercise
  • your lifestyle – for example, alcohol and smoking

The GP will do their best to discuss the diagnosis with you, but this first appointment might only be 10 to 15 minutes.

If you have questions about your diagnosis

It's usually difficult to take in everything the GP tells you during the appointment.

Talk to family and friends about what the GP told you, and write down any questions you have.

Then make another GP appointment and take your list of questions with you.

There's also a lot of information on diabetes available.

What happens after the diagnosis

Usually, the following things happen after your diagnosis:

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Liverpool Diabetes Partnership

The Liverpool Diabetes Partnership [LDP] is a service dedicated to providing quality diabetes care within the community, right on your doorstep.

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Diabetes & You

FREE education sessions – are currently running at health centres across the city.

This page has been amended by the Diabetes Team from Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.



Content provided by NHS.uk

Find information and advice on health conditions, symptoms, healthy living, medicines and how to get help.



Published on Mon, 12 Jul 2021 11:01:36 GMT
Modified on Wed, 06 Jul 2022 10:43:01 GMT



Content provided by NHS Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG). For more information, please visit www.liverpoolccg.nhs.uk.

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Published on Mon, 17 May 2021 11:34:50 GMT
Modified on Wed, 06 Jul 2022 10:41:03 GMT