Risk factors for diabetes: Type 1, type 2, and gestational
This article is about risk factors for diabetes mellitus. Usually just called diabetes, this is a disease that occurs when the body does not make or use insulin in the way it should.
Diabetes results in a person having too much of a type of sugar, called glucose, in their blood and not enough in their cells. At least 1 in 4 people with diabetes does not know that they have the disease.
Knowing risk factors for diabetes is very important for preventing the damage it can cause. If a person knows what these factors are, they can see a doctor early to find out if they have, or are at risk of, diabetes.
There are three main kinds of diabetes: type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes. Each of these is briefly described below, along with their important risk factors.
Type 1 diabetes
In type 1 diabetes, the body makes no or very little insulin. It affects around 5 percent of those with diabetes. It is treated with either insulin injections or an insulin pump, along with diet.
The main risk factors for type 1 diabetes include:
Family history. Having a parent or sibling with type 1 diabetes increases the chances of a person having the same type. If both parents have type 1, the risk is even higher.
Age. Type 1 diabetes usually affects younger people. Ages 4 to 7 and ages 10 to 14 are the most common. Type 1 diabetes may occur at other ages, although it does so less often.
Genetics. Having certain genes may increase the risk of type 1 diabetes. Your doctor can check for these genes.
Where a person lives. Studies have found more type 1 diabetes the further away from the equator a perso Continue reading