Diabetes -Types, Signs and Treatment

Diabetes -Types, Signs and Treatment

This is a condition in which the body fails to regulate the concentration of sugar (glucose) in the blood. Blood-sugar levels in the body are normally controlled by a hormone called insulin produced by the pancreas. As a result, sugar builds up in the blood and can cause hyperglycaemia (below). People with diabetes have to control their blood sugar with diet and insulin injections or tablets. Too much of insulin or too little sugar can cause hypoglycaemia (opposite). If a known diabetic casualty appears unwell, give sugar. This will rapidly correct hypoglycaemia and will do little harm in hyperglycaemia.

Types of Diabetes

  1. HYPERGLYCAEMIA: This is when the sugar content in the blood is said to be high and this is caused by the lack of insulin in the body in order to regulate the sugar content in the blood. Hyperglycaemia, over a long period, can result in unconsciousness. The casualty will drift into this state over a few days. It requires urgent treatment in hospital.

Signs and Symptoms of Hyperglycaemia
  • Warm
  • Dry skin
  • Rapid pulse and breathing
  • Fruity/sweet breath
  • Excessive thirst
  • Drowsiness
  • Unconsciousness

2    HYPOGLYCAEMIA: This is when the sugar content in the blood is said to be low due to too much of insulin and too little of sugar in the body and thereby affect the function of the brain. This problem is characterized by a rapidly deteriorating level of response. Hypoglycaemia can occur in people with diabetes and, more rarely, appear with an epileptic seizure.

Signs and Symptoms of Hypoglycaemia
  • A history of diabetes; the casualty may recognize the onset of a “hypo” attack
  • Weakness, faintness, or hunger
  • Palpitations and muscle tremors
  • Strange actions or behavior; the casualty may seem confused or belligerent
  • Sweating
  • Cold and clammy skin
  • Pulse may be rapid and strong
  • Deteriorating level of response

Treatment of Diabetes
  • If the casualty is conscious, give him a sugary drink, sugar lumps, chocolate, or other sweet food.
  • If the casualty is unconscious, be ready to resuscitate if necessary and place in recovery position
  • Seek medical advise

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