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Type 1 and type 2 diabetes both happen when the body properly can’t use and store glucose, which is necessary for energy. Glucose or sugar collects in the blood and does not reach the cells that need it, which can lead to serious complications.


Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 diabetes commonly appears first in children and youngsters, but it can also arise in older people. The immune system attacks the pancreatic beta cells so that they can no longer produce insulin. Type 1 diabetes is often hereditary and there is no way to prevent. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 5% of people with diabetes have type 1.

In Type 1 diabetes, the immune system mistakenly attacks the pancreatic beta cells, which produce insulin. Childhood infections may play a role causes Type 1 diabetes.

The immune system destroys these cells, which means the body can no longer make enough insulin to regulate blood glucose levels. A person with type 1 diabetes will need to use supplemental insulin from the time they receive the diagnosis and for the rest of their life

Type 1 diabetes causes

Type 1 and type 2 have different causes, but they both involve insulin.

Insulin is a type of hormone. The pancreas produces it to regulate the way blood sugar becomes energy.

Type 1 often affects children and young adults, but it can happen later in life as well. Some major causes are:

  • Having a family history of diabetes
  • Being born with certain genetic features that affect the way the body produces or uses insulin
  • Exposure to some viruses or infections, like rubella cytomegalovirus or mumps.
  • Some medical conditions, such as cystic fibrosis or hemochromatosis


Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is more likely to appear as people age, but many children are now starting to develop it. In type 2 diabetes, the pancreas produces insulin, but the body cannot use it effectively. The factors appear to play a role in Type 2 diabetes development is Lifestyle.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 90–95 percent of people with diabetes have type 2.

In type 2 diabetes, the body's cells start to resist the effects of insulin. In time, the body stops producing enough insulin, so it can no longer use glucose effectively.

This means glucose cannot enter the cells. Instead, it builds up in the blood. This is known as insulin resistance.

It can happen when the person often or constantly has high blood glucose. When the body's cells are overexposed to insulin, they become less responsive to it, or maybe they no longer respond at all.

Symptoms may take years to appear. People may use medications, diet and exercise from the early stages to reduce the risk or slow the disease.

In the early stages, a person with type 2 diabetes does not need supplemental insulin. As the disease progresses, however, they may need it to manage their blood glucose levels in order to stay healthy.


Type 2 diabetes causes

Some of the major causes include:

  • having a family member with type 2 diabetes
  • following an unhealthful diet
  • having obesity
  • smoking
  • the use of some medications, including some anti-seizure drugs and some medications for HIV
  • Lack of exercise


Both types of diabetes can lead to complications, such as cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, eurological conditions, vision loss and damage to blood vessels and organs.

Another type of diabetes is gestational diabetes. This happens in pregnancy and typically resolves after childbirth, but some people then develop type 2 diabetes later in life.



The beginning of type 1 diabetes tends to be sudden. If symptoms are present, the person should see a doctor as soon as possible.

People with type 2 diabetes should have regular checks to ensure that their glucose levels are healthy. If tests show they are high, the person can take action to delay or prevent diabetes and its complications.

The following tests can assess for type 1 or type 2 diabetes, but they may not all be useful for both types:

  • A1C test, which is also known as the hemoglobin A1c, HbA1c, or glycohemoglobin test
  • Fasting plasma glucose (FPG) test
  • Random plasma glucose (RPG) test
  • Oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT)

Depending on the results, the doctor may diagnose diabetes or prediabetes.