Are you concerned that you or someone you know may be living with undiagnosed diabetes? There is no need to panic. Identifying the signs and learning how diabetes can be accurately diagnosed are key steps in taking control of the illness, understanding its impact on your health, and joining millions of others who manage diabetes every day. In this blog post, we will discuss what factors contribute to a diagnosis of type 1 or type 2 diabetes and provide resources for individuals seeking support as they navigate their own journey.

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a metabolic disorder that affects the body's ability to produce or respond to the hormone insulin. It is caused when the body either can’t make enough insulin or can’t properly use the insulin it does make. Without insulin, glucose isn’t able to be absorbed by cells, so it accumulates in the blood instead.

This causes a person with diabetes to experience high blood sugar levels which leads to exhaustion and other serious health complications if left untreated. The two most common types of diabetes are type 1 and type 2. Type 1 diabetes is caused by one’s autoimmune system destroying cells in their pancreas that produce insulin. Type 2 being related to diet, obesity and physical activity – or lack thereof – where not enough insulin is produced or cells don’t properly respond to it.

Treatment of diabetes includes lifestyle changes such as a healthier diet and regular exercise as well as managing one's weight, as well as pharmacological interventions – medications, insulin therapy etc.

Why is my blood glucose level high? How does this happen?

High blood glucose, or hyperglycemia, is caused by a variety of things. It can be triggered by eating too much sugary food and drinks, not getting enough physical activity, taking certain medications like steroids, skipping meals, and stress. Over time, untreated high glucose levels can lead to serious health issues such as kidney damage and nerve damage.

Additionally, a lack of sufficient insulin can cause the body to try and use alternative sources for energy which results in an increase of glucose production in the liver. All these factors need to be considered when it comes to managing blood sugar levels. Making healthy lifestyle choices is essential for long-term blood sugar regulation.

What are the different types of diabetes?

Diabetes is a serious medical condition that is caused by a problem with the way the body handles blood sugar levels, otherwise known as glucose. There are three main types of diabetes: type 1, type 2, and gestational. Type 1 diabetes requires insulin injections to manage blood sugar levels; those who suffer from type 1 typically present symptoms early in life.

Type 2 diabetes develops slowly over time and is usually managed with diet and exercise; however, some may require medication or insulin injections to keep their blood sugar levels in check. Gestational is a form of diabetes that affects pregnant women but typically resolves itself once the baby is born. It's important for those at risk for diabetes to talk to their doctor about screening options and lifestyle changes necessary to prevent further complications.

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Type 1 diabetes

Type 1 diabetes, or insulin-dependent diabetes, affects the body's ability to produce insulin. It is an autoimmune disorder, meaning that the body's immune system attacks its own cells, which often results in someone with Type 1 requiring lifelong injections of insulin. Though this type can occur at any age and is typically diagnosed during childhood or adolescence, it shouldn't be mistaken with Type 2 diabetes; while one has a laboratory test that can diagnose this disorder, there are no such tests available for Type 2.

Symptoms of Type 1 include excessive thirst and frequent urination as well as extreme hunger, fatigue and weight loss. Treatment includes monitoring blood glucose levels several times during the day and using lifestyle changes along with regular medical care in order to stay healthy.

Type 2 diabetes

There are several types of diabetes, the most common of which being type 1 and type 2. Type 2 diabetes is a chronic health condition that is caused by a problem in how the body processes insulin resulting in high blood sugar levels. It occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body does not use the produced insulin properly, causing glucose to build up in the bloodstream.

Those with type 2 diabetes can manage their condition with diet and exercise, as well as medication and careful monitoring of blood glucose levels. Exercise also helps lower your risk for developing type 2 diabetes by helping you maintain a healthy weight.


Prediabetes is a serious health condition that is caused by high blood sugar levels, but doesn't reach the level of full-blown type 2 diabetes. It's important to note that prediabetes can be just as dangerous as types 1 and 2 if left untreated. Diagnosis of this condition usually involves a fasting blood glucose test given by a healthcare professional, along with A1C testing or an oral glucose tolerance test.

Depending on the results, the patient may need lifestyle changes such as increased physical activity, improved diet, and weight loss. In addition to lifestyle modifications, medications such as metformin may also be prescribed to help reduce the risk of complications in the future. While prediabetes can lead to types 1 or 2 diabetes, with proper treatment and preventive steps it's possible to keep prediabetes from advancing further.

Gestational diabetes

Gestational diabetes is a unique type of diabetes that arises during pregnancy, meaning that it is only experienced by pregnant women. Women who are diagnosed with gestational diabetes will find their blood sugar levels to be unusually high due to hormonal changes during pregnancy, resulting in moderate to serious medical complications both short-term and long-term. In terms of types of diabetes, gestational diabetes is distinct from other types such as type 1 and type 2.

Therefore, it is important for pregnant women to be aware of what can increase the risk of developing this condition as well as possible treatments available. With some simple precautions and active management techniques, gestational diabetes can be effectively managed, helping mothers-to-be ensure their well-being while providing a safe environment for the baby.

Less common types of diabetes include:


Monogenic diabetes syndromes

Monogenic diabetes syndromes are types of diabetes that have a single gene abnormality or mutation as the root cause. While they are rare, they are critical to understand in order to provide proper treatment and management for individuals afflicted with these types of diabetes. Different monogenic types include neonatal diabetes, maturity-onset diabetes of the young (MODY), and Wolfram syndrome – each with their own unique symptoms, diagnosis process and treatment options. Education about both monogenic types of diabetes and more common types is crucial to the health and well-being of those affected.


Cystic fibrosis-related diabetes

Cystic fibrosis-related diabetes (CFRD) is a form of diabetes that is caused by the chronic infection of cystic fibrosis. It is different from other types of diabetes in that its onset is typically after the age of 10 and it is characterized by a loss of glucose tolerance, with signs appearing anywhere between adolescence and adulthood. CFRD can either be type 1 or type 2, with type 1 being more common in younger individuals with cystic fibrosis and type 2 usually developing over time.

While some patients may stay stable over years without needing to begin insulin therapy, many require insulin treatment for long-term control. Since CFRD shares similar symptoms as other types of diabetes, it’s important for doctors to identify which type has been diagnosed before recommending appropriate treatments.


Drug or chemical-induced diabetes

Drug or chemical-induced diabetes is a type of diabetes caused by certain types of medications or environmental toxins. With drug-induced diabetes, symptoms begin when the person starts taking a certain medication, and can be reversed if the medication is stopped. Chemical-induced diabetes occurs after exposure to specific chemicals; multiple types of chemicals have been shown to cause this form of diabetes, including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and organophosphates found in several industries.

Although treatable, drug and chemical-induced diabetes can be hard to diagnose because the medication may take weeks, sometimes even months, to cause any changes in blood sugar levels. Blood tests can determine if a person has one of these types of diabetes and close monitoring would be necessary for proper diagnosis and treatment.

How common is diabetes?

Diabetes is a growing global health problem. According to the World Health Organization, more than 422 million people are living with diabetes today—that is close to 10% of all adults globally. There are two types of diabetes: Type 1 and Type 2. Type 1 Diabetes is usually diagnosed in children and young adults, while Type 2 Diabetes is the most common form of diabetes and usually develops in adulthood and can be prevented or delayed.

No matter the type, people with diabetes have high levels of glucose or sugar in their blood due to the body's inability to produce enough insulin or properly use the insulin it produces, leading to serious health risks if not monitored and managed appropriately. Fortunately, lifestyle changes such as exercising regularly, eating healthy foods and maintaining a healthy weight can help prevent or delay Type 2 Diabetes progression for many people.

What causes diabetes?

Diabetes is a chronic health condition caused by high levels of glucose, also known as sugar, in the bloodstream. Generally speaking, diabetes occurs when your body either does not produce enough insulin or does not properly use the insulin it does produce. Insulin is a hormone that helps convert food into energy for cells in the body to use; however, if too much glucose enters the bloodstream it can be detrimental.

Factors that could lead to the onset of diabetes include being overweight, having a family history of diabetes, lack of physical activity and poor eating habits with excessive consumption of carbohydrates and sugary beverages. Furthermore, certain medical conditions such as Cushing's syndrome and polycystic ovarian syndrome can also cause diabetes. It is important to know the risk factors and to work closely with a doctor if you think you may have signs or symptoms of diabetes.


What are the symptoms of diabetes?

Diabetes is a serious illness that affects millions of people around the world. Those with diabetes are unable to properly process sugar, leading to a wide range of health complications. Common symptoms include increased thirst, increased urination, sugar cravings, weight loss, fatigue and blurry vision. If any of these symptoms persist for an extended period of time, it is best to seek medical advice. Blood tests are typically administered to diagnose diabetes and finding out early can reduce potential long-term consequences or illnesses arising from untreated diabetes.

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How is diabetes diagnosed?

Diabetes can be diagnosed in several ways. The methods of diagnosis involve testing a person's blood sugar levels, administering an oral glucose tolerance test, and using a Glycated Hemoglobin A1C test. With the blood sugar level test, fasting and random samples of the person's blood need to be taken to analyze the glucose concentration.

An oral glucose tolerance test requires participants to drink a sugary liquid, after which multiple samples of their blood are taken over several hours to gauge how well the body is metabolizing glucose. The Glycated Hemoglobin A1C test is used to check hemoglobin molecules in the red blood cells for any binds with glucose molecules due to having been exposed to high glucose levels, thus providing an overall average of a person's blood sugar concentration over three months’ time. These tests are key in accurately diagnosing diabetes and its varying degrees.


Tests for diagnosing prediabetes and diabetes are increasingly important to a person's health. One way that doctors determine the risk of developing diabetes is through an HbA1c test. This test measures the amount of sugar in your red blood cells over a three-month period and provides an average of their levels within that time frame.

 It is a reliable indicator of our current and long-term glucose control, as it can indicate even very small changes in someone's glucose level. With this information, doctors can create personalized care plans and monitor progress over time. Ultimately, an HbA1c test plays a crucial role in helping to manage diabetes and improve overall health.

Fasting plasma glucose test

The fasting plasma glucose test is an important tool for diagnosing prediabetes and diabetes. It involves drawing a blood sample from the patient and sending it to a lab for analysis, where normal glucose levels should not exceed 125 mg/dL. In patients whose results come back above that level, further testing is usually required to make a definitive diagnosis.

The Fasting Plasma Glucose Test can provide valuable information to healthcare professionals in terms of formulating an appropriate treatment regimen tailored to the individual's needs. As such, it plays an essential role in helping people with diabetes manage their condition more effectively and stay healthy.


Oral glucose tolerance test

The oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) is used to diagnose prediabetes and diabetes. It provides doctors with more detailed information about how a patient's body handles sugar than a fasting glucose test. During an OGTT, a patient is asked to consume 76 grams of glucose in liquid form, after which their blood sugar levels are measured multiple times over a period of two hours.

 This allows doctors to accurately measure the speed at which the body breaks down and absorbs glucose, helping them come up with an accurate diagnosis. The OGTT is not recommended for everyone; however, it can be extremely helpful in diagnosing and managing people who have or are at risk of having prediabetes or diabetes.

Diabetes is diagnosed when

How is diabetes diagnosed? Diagnosis of diabetes typically begins with a fasting blood glucose test, which measures the level of glucose in a person's blood after the individual has gone without eating for at least 8 hours. If this test shows higher than normal levels, it may indicate diabetes and be followed up with an A1C test.

The A1C test measures average blood sugar levels over 2 or 3 months, allowing for a more comprehensive diagnosis process and long-term trend analysis. Screening for diabetes is an important part of taking charge of your personal health and should not be neglected.

Who should be tested for diabetes?

Diabetes is a serious and potentially life-threatening disease, so it’s important that people take steps to know whether or not they may be at risk of developing this condition. While anyone can be tested for diabetes, it is especially recommended for those with a family history of the illness, as well as those overweight or obese who are 45 years of age or older, have high blood pressure, or have members of certain ethnic backgrounds such as African American, Latino, Native American or Asian American.

Additionally, those individuals who have had gestational diabetes during pregnancy, who experience frequent fatigue or thirst and who experience frequent urinary infections should definitely consider being tested for diabetes. Early detection through regular testing can help people manage their risk factors and stay healthy in the long run.

How is diabetes treated?

Diabetes is a chronic disease that requires daily management to maintain good health. Treatments vary depending on the type of diabetes, but typically include lifestyle changes such as diet modification, increased physical activity, and improved coping skills for managing stress. Medications are also often included in diabetes treatment plans to help control blood glucose levels and reduce the risk of complications from high or low blood sugar.

 Symptoms of hypoglycemia can be managed through frequent small meals and snacks throughout the day, as well as medications and insulin injections when necessary for type 1 diabetes or some cases of type 2 diabetes. With regular monitoring an appropriate combination of diet, exercise, medications or insulin injections, people with diabetes can successfully manage their disease and enjoy an active life.


 Please book an appointment with the Best Diabetologist in Lahore, Karachi, Islamabad, and all major cities of Pakistan through InstaCare, or call our helpline at 02137136090 to find a verified doctor for your disease.