Diabetes is a serious and chronic lifelong metabolic disease characterized by high level of blood sugar. It occurs when the pancreas cannot produce enough insulin, or the insulin does not work very well. One in twenty (5.3%) people in Australia had diabetes in 2020-21.

  • The rate of diabetes increases with age from 10.3% for people aged 55-64 years to 14.9% for people aged 65-74 years
  • Almost one in five people over 75 years have diabetes.
  • In Australia type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes (85.5%), followed by Type 1 diabetes (11.0%). In 4.1% of the patients the type of diabetes is unclear, or patients are unable to report it.

Meticulous monitoring and management of diabetes will decrease the risk of serious complications of diabetes, including heart diseases and stroke.

Type 1 diabetes

Type 1 diabetes, also known as juvenile diabetes, where the body’s immune system attacks and destroys the cells produce insulin.

There is no cure for type 1 diabetes and people living with type 1 diabetes need to administer insulin on a regular basis. The insulin may be delivered with the insulin pump instead of the regular injections. The patients with type 1 diabetes will also need to closely monitor their blood sugar levels. Lifestyle changes can help them in managing the disease.

Ongoing careful management of blood sugar levels decreases the risk of serious chronic complications in the patients living with type 1 diabetes. Some common complications include:

  • Ketoacidosis 
  • Eye disease
  • Cardiovascular diseases
  • High blood pressure
  • Kidney diseases
  • High risk of skin infection
  • Foot or hand numbness, Nerve damage
  • TIA and stroke

Type 2 diabetes

Type 2 diabetes, where the body does not produce enough insulin or the body’s cells do not respond to insulin effectively. Type 2 is significantly more common than type 1 diabetes.in Australia, around 85% of all the adult patients with diabetes have type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is likely caused by a combination of generic and lifestyle factors. Type 2 diabetes is more common in people who have a family history of the diabetes. On the other hand, the risk of type 2 diabetes increases with obesity, lack of physical activity and unhealthy diet.

Being very thirsty, frequent urination, chronic lethargy and tiredness, feeling hungry, weight loss, blurred vision and delayed in healing the wounds all are the symptoms of type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is usually managed by lifestyle modification as well as taking diabetes medications. Regular physical activity, healthy diet, weight control, quitting smoking and limiting alcohol consumption all are very effective in management of type 2 diabetes.

Gestational diabetes

Type of the diabetes which occurs during the pregnancy. Between 3% to 8% of pregnant women have such high levels of blood sugar that their body is unable to produce enough insulin to absorb it all. This diabetes, usually disappear when the pregnancy is over. However, these women have high risk of developing type 2 diabetes in future. Those women who have history of gestational diabetes in their previous pregnancies, need to have early blood test in their future pregnancies to check their blood sugar level.

Get Your Heart Health Check in the Shire Today

It is estimated a heart health check can help prevent approximately 42 heart events every day for the next 5 years, including heart attacks, strokes, and deaths. It is very important to recognise that Heart Health checks should be a regular part of your health check-up routine if you are 45 years or over, or even earlier if you present risk factors.

At Shire Doctors and Dentists, we are committed to providing high quality patient care, excellence, and safety, in addition to good value treatment and management.

Visit your GP and book your all-important Heart Health Check at Shire Doctors and Dentists today.