Learn about the causes and symptoms associated with diabetes. And how the condition changed the life of two diabetic teens.
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Rebecca Brayton: While diabetes is a serious condition, people living with it can still lead healthy and happy lives. Hi! I’m Rebecca Brayton and welcome to watchmojo.com. We sent our host Tiffany to a local diabetes awareness event where she learned more about the illness from an expert and two kids living with it everyday. Tiffany: So, Anne, what is Type I Diabetes? Anne Royer: Type I Diabetes is characterized the fact that your pancreas has stopped producing insulin. There is nothing you can do to prevent it. It’s just going to happen. If it’s bound to happen, it’s happening, whether you’re overweight or if you’re thin, active, inactive, old, young. It’s going to happen. But if you are a Type II, it’s in your genetics. It’s in your family. It’s related to your weight, especially if you have it around your belly. Tiffany: What are the symptoms when one has diabetes? Anne Royer: In Type I’s, the beginning is very violent and a way that is very sudden. It’s very, it’s all there. You have no more insulin. So, your body just can’t cope. So, you’re very ill right away suddenly whereas a person who has Type II is a sneaky start. It’s like a snake in the grass. The sugar, the pancreas is slow. It’s not making the insulin properly at the right time, the right amount. So, your blood sugars are creeping up slowly and your body gets used to it. So, you just feel a little more tired and a little more grumpy. And you know, you just think it’s your age or you think you’re depressed or something seasonal. And really, you have diabetes. And that’s very serious. Tiffany: Kevin, Maria, what is diabetes? Kevin Mariasine: Diabetes is a disease that affects your life by; you have to learn to live with it. You have to take needles everyday and insulin to keep you alive. Maria Katsuoros: Our pancreas doesn’t produce insulin like let’s say yours would. So, each day, we have to keep our blood sugars at a normal level with control of insulin, diet and exercise. Tiffany: Can you tell me then what were the symptoms that made you realize that you’re diabetic. Kevin Mariasine: As I was waking up in the middle of the night, I was very thirsty. I was frequently going to the washroom. Maria Katsuoros: The same symptoms the time I was often thirsty. I was always rushing to the bathroom. And then my parents found something funny also and brought me straight to the hospital. And that’s when I was diagnosed. Tiffany: How does that change your life? Kevin Mariasine: When I was first diagnosed, I felt that when I went to school with diabetes, my friends saw me testing my blood sugar. They felt, they looked at me like I was weird, like I was a monster or something. But then, everybody adjust to it. And you’re family just learn to deal with it and go on in life. Maria Katsuoros: You have to be more conscious of your blood sugars and things like that. You need to test more often and take insulin. Tiffany: Does that mean that you have to make a lot of changes in your life? Kevin Mariasine: Well, I was always an active kid. I always loved doing sports and running and biking and all that. So, I just had to adjust to it. I have to check my sugar more often now and just keep a juice. You know what I mean? And basically, I can do everything I always want to. Tiffany: Thank you guys! Kevin Mariesine: Thank you very much! Maria Katsuoros: Thank you!