Type ONE Diabetes:
- is not preventable
- is not curable
- can not be put into remission
- lifestyle choices do not cause it, prevent it, or cure it
- is an auto-immune disease
- can never be managed with oral medication, only complete insulin injection therapy
- can be diagnosed in babies, children and adults
- is fatal if not diagnosed in time
- is a 24/7 disease that is very emotionally and physically demanding
The first step in raising awareness for any cause is clarity. Currently, the name confusion between Type 1 Diabetes & Type 2 Diabetes inhibits clarity. The media perpetuates misconceptions by not clarifying the type identifier when speaking of Diabetes, leaving the public to perceive all forms of Diabetes as one in the same when, in fact, Type 1 and Type 2 are vastly different. Type ONE Diabetes is absolutely not preventable and lifestyle changes will not put the disease in remission. Without insulin, certain death will result in a relatively short period of time for a person with Type ONE Diabetes.
Although it saves the lives of people with Type ONE, synthetic insulin isn’t nearly as effective as the body’s natural insulin. It is very tricky, working either too slow or too fast to match up to what the body needs in real time. Thus, blood sugar is still very difficult to regulate, especially for children. Factors such as: weather, activity, stress, puberty, sickness, sleep and just about everything has an effect on a Type ONE’s blood sugar levels. An insulin pump distributes insulin as instructed by it’s user but these calculations are best guesses based on what, where, and when and they are subsequently subject to adverse results. These adverse results are severe high and low blood sugar levels from too much or too little insulin. The lows can come on quickly without warning and render the person incapable of normal function. A new study found that these severe occurrences cause brain damage to children. Also, these results can lead to long-term complications to the kidneys, eyes, and heart.
Type ONE Diabetes desperately needs a cure. However, due to the public’s current misconceptions about Diabetes, significant research funding for a cure is at risk. The public is unlikely to donate toward a cause unless they deem it life threatening. Currently, a large majority of the public views Diabetes as preventable & curable, not realizing how untrue that is for every single child or adult with Type One Diabetes living with a life-threatening disease 24/7. The media focuses on the prevention and remission of Type 2 but they only refer to it as “Diabetes”, leaving out the type identifier – thus leading to widespread confusion, even within the medical community. While the media coverage is hugely beneficial to people with pre-Type 2 or Type 2, it has inadvertently overshadowed Type ONE and it’s ability to stand on it’s own. The two main types of Diabetes need descriptive names to distinguish them as unique. These are disease types, not stages, and deserve more than a number. “1” & “2” are vague, forgetful and leave an insignificant impression on people outside the Diabetes Community. This often times leads to misinterpretation of medical treatment, safety/emergency measures, and public awareness of the important differences of the two main types of Diabetes.
Until Type 1 Diabetes is afforded a name revision to the type identifier, the written form of the number “ONE”, along with a visually strong logo, will have a bigger impact and increased odds for recognition. Public recognition of the name Type ONE would be especially important to the Type ONE community who has all but lost their ability to reference the word “diabetes” without confusion as it inadvertently evokes public association of Type 2 . Both diseases should be afforded distinction to effectively raise awareness and advocate for their specific needs. Everyone should have a voice. Everyone should support clarity.