Are you part of the diabetes family?

We may all know someone with diabetes - even if they don't know themselves

It's World Diabetes Day, marked each year on 14 November, the birthday of Sir Frederick Banting, who co-discovered insulin along with Charles Best in 1922.

It's a day when millions of people around the world come together to raise awareness of diabetes.

The aim of World Diabetes Day 2018 is to celebrate everyone who makes our lives that little bit easier every day. It's important it is to have support around you when you’re living with diabetes. Whether that’s a family member, a friend or even your neighbour down the road.

The theme for World Diabetes Day 2018-19 is Family and Diabetes. The campaign will aim to:

  • Raise awareness of the impact that diabetes has on the family and support network of those affected
  • Promote the role of the family in the management, care, prevention and education of diabetes.

Could you spot the warning signs of diabetes in your family?

A recent study found that despite the majority of people surveyed having a family member with diabetes, an alarming four in five parents would have trouble recognising the warning signs. One in three wouldn’t spot them at all.

What do you know about diabetes? Take the test!

Are you at risk? Check it out. Then read the rest...

The stats

  • The number of people with diabetes around the world is expected to rise to 522 million by 2030
  • Diabetes is a leading cause of heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure and lower limb amputation
  • 80% of type-2 diabetes cases are preventable through adopting a healthy lifestyle
  • In the UK alone, 4.6 million people are living with diabetes, with this expected to grow to more than five million by 2025 if nothing changes.

What is type-1 diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes is a serious, lifelong condition where your blood glucose level is too high because your body can't make a hormone called insulin. It’s not caused by your lifestyle; rather it’s an autoimmune condition. We need insulin to help move glucose out of our blood and into our cells, so we can use it for energy. Without insulin, blood glucose levels get too high. That’s why everyone with Type 1 diabetes uses injections of insulin to treat their diabetes.

Your GP will help you with an insulin pump or similar to help control your diabetes.

What is Type 2 diabetes?

In Type 2 diabetes, the body doesn’t make enough insulin, or the insulin it makes doesn’t work properly, meaning glucose builds up in the blood. Type 2 diabetes is caused by a range of genetic and environmental factors and is more common in people who are overweight or obese.

Type 2 diabetes usually starts in middle-aged or elderly adults but is increasingly being seen in children and young adults.

Find out more about diabetes and the campaign here.