Adolescent onset diabetes refers to the type-1 diabetes. It is named such because it appears during the early years of a person, i.e. in childhood. This type of diabetes is generally hereditary and cannot be avoided. In this condition, an autoimmune response is triggered against the beta cells of islets of Langerhans present in our pancreas.
This autoimmune response results in destruction of beta cells, which are responsible for the production of insulin. This insulin is crucial for glucose metabolism in our body and so, when the beta cells are destroyed, our body becomes deficient in insulin, resulting into hyperglycemia and hence, diabetes. You can control this type of diabetes with lifestyle changes and insulin shots, but cannot prevent its onset.
Symptoms of Adolescent Onset Diabetes
Due to diabetes, the body is not able to utilize glucose for energy and so, it breaks down fats for energy production, resulting in the production of ketones. These ketones are the byproducts of fat metabolism and are poisonous in nature. Presence of ketones results into several problems and symptoms, like rapid breathing, vomiting, nausea, sweet smelling breath, and stomach pain appear. It is the most prominent symptom of type-1 diabetes and is not very common in type-2 diabetespatients.
Polydipsia or Excessive Thirst
Due to higher glucose levels in blood, the water is pulled out from your tissues. This water is required to dilute the high sugar levels of your blood. When your tissues lose water, they become dehydrated and so you feel thirsty.
Since the process continues all the time, so you have to keep on drinking more water and still your thirst remains unquenched. Due to excessive urination also your thirst keeps on building up.
Polyuria or Frequent Urination
In type-1 diabetes, since the blood glucose levels are very high, your kidneys have to work extra, to bring these levels to normal. So, they keep on diluting the glucose content and passing it out with urine. This action of your kidneys to remove excess glucose from the blood, leads to frequent urination.
Polyphagia or Increased Hunger
Glucose is the main source of energy for your body, but in case of type-1 diabetes, it remains outside in the blood, as insulin is not available to facilitate the entry of glucose molecules inside the cells. When the body cells are not able to get glucose in enough quantity, they trigger hunger in your body. To compensate for the lost glucose, your body cells demand more of it and so, you have a constant feeling of hunger even after eating a lot.
In diabetes, fluid is taken out from your body tissues, which leaves them dehydrated. When the same happens and fluid is taken out of your eye muscles, there is a negative impact on your lenses. After losing fluid, they become distorted and result into blurred vision.
Irritability and Fatigue
When your body lacks energy, it becomes tired. In case of type-1 diabetes, even the brain cells are not able to get enough of glucose to produce energy, which results into irritability. Since, the body cells are not able to generate enough energy, so there is a continuous feeling of tiredness and fatigue in your body.
Unwanted Weight Loss
In diabetes, especially type-1 diabetes, the cells are not able to get enough food and the glucose is discarded out of your body via urine. This leads to a depletion of sugar and fats are burnt to generate energy, leading to weight loss. Also, due to dehydration, the tissues may shrink, leading to unwanted weight loss.