Diabetes is a serious complex condition. There is no cure, and diabetes can have a significant impact on your quality of life and life expectancy, but with daily self-care and effective management you can live an enjoyable, normal life.

If you are worried about your health you can call our confidential support line 24/7 on 1800 667 877.
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Diabetes in Australia

Living with Diabetes — Diabetes Australia reports that 280 Australians develop diabetes every day, and it is the fastest growing chronic condition in this country.

The current statistics from Diabetes Australia estimate that 10% of these are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, and 85-90% with type 2 diabetes. Gestational diabetes is also increasing in prevalence. 

Types of diabetes

There are different types of diabetes; all types are complex and serious. The three main types of diabetes are type 1type 2 and gestational diabetes.

Diabetes type 1

Type 1 diabetes is an auto-immune condition that has no cure and can't be prevented. It is not linked to modifiable lifestyle factors. 

Diabetes type 2

Type 2 is largely a preventable condition. By modifying behavioural and lifestyle factors the risk decreases. The common risk factors for developing type 2 diabetes include:

  • being overweight or obese, obese people are 4 times more likely to develop diabetes type 2, and overweight people are twice as likely to develop diabetes
  • carrying excess weight around the waist
  • insufficient physical activity
  • unhealthy diet, and 
  • high blood pressure.

Those with a family history of diabetes have a genetic disposition to developing type 2 diabetes.

Genes have also been identified as increasing the risk of diabetes type 2 in some cultural backgrounds including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, Chinese, South Asian, Indian, and Pacific Islander people. Although inherited genes may influence the development of type 2 diabetes, modification of behaviour and lifestyle are the most important preventative measures.

Associated risks

Potential complications are the same for type 1 and type 2 diabetes and include heart attack, stroke, kidney disease, limb amputation, depression, anxiety and blindness.

We know diabetes:

  • is the leading cause of blindness in working age adults
  • is a leading cause of kidney failure and dialysis
  • increases the risk of heart attacks and stroke by up to 4 times
  • is a major cause of limb amputations, and
  • affects physical health as well as mental health — depression, anxiety and distress occur in more than 30% of all people with diabetes.

For more information visit Diabetes Australia.

What can I do next?

Why not read some of our articles on staying healthy that relate to diabetes:

Our service provides free and confidential support 24/7, to nurses, midwives and students Australia wide. If you would like to speak to someone call 1800 667 877, or you can request support via email.

If you would like to know a bit more about the service before getting in contact — take a look through accessing support.

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