The Friends & Family Guide to Type 1 Diabetes
Maybe it’s the friend’s child next door or a member in the family who has Type 1 diabetes. Perhaps you’ll be in charge of care at some point or are simply interested in learning more about T1. Consider this guide to help you navigate Type 1 as a friend or family member.
What is Type 1?
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that affects a person’s pancreas. The pancreas is responsible for producing insulin, a hormone people need to get energy from food. Our pancreas, for reasons that have not been identified, does not produce any insulin. As a result, we need to inject or continually infuse insulin through a pump and carefully balance our insulin doses with eating and daily activities. We must also regularly monitor our blood-sugar levels. Type 1 is a non-stop and 24/7 balancing act that we must maneuver every day. There is no way to prevent Type 1 and there is no cure (currently!).
How do you manage it?
We get by with a little help from our friends! These include our glucose meter, insulin, needles, and monitors. The glucose meter is a device that measures blood sugar. We use a device that pricks our finger and we put the blood sample onto a test strip. From there, the test strip is read by the meter and gives us a number on the meter screen.
We can get insulin into our bodies through multiple daily injections or an insulin pump.
Injections are delivered to our bodies through insulin pens and needles. There are two types of insulin that we use. Fast-acting insulin gives our bodies insulin right away and is taken with meals or to correct a high blood sugar. Fast-a Continue reading