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Type 1 diabetes is a lifelong disease. It develops when your body can't make enough insulin. Insulin is a hormone that helps sugar (also called glucose) get inside your body's cells. Your cells use glucose for energy.
Without insulin, sugar and acids called ketones build up in your blood and can cause other health problems. These include diseases of the heart, large blood vessels, eyes, nerves, and kidneys.
This a busy time of your life, and diabetes might seem like too much to deal with. You might be getting to bed late, sleeping in, and eating at irregular meal times—all the things lots of people do at your age. You might even feel like ignoring your diabetes or pretending you don't have it.
But now is really the perfect time for you to start learning what you need to do to manage your diabetes. You're at a good age to start taking more responsibility for your own health. That includes paying attention to your blood sugar levels, eating healthy foods, and getting plenty of exercise.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you're having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
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Adaptation Date: 2/17/2022
Adapted By: Alberta Health Services
Adaptation Reviewed By: Alberta Health Services
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