This is awkward - we don't support your browser. Please download Chrome, Firefox or Opera to get the full experience.

This is awkward - we don't support your browser. Please download Chrome or Opera to get the full experience.

This is awkward - we don't support your browser. Please use Safari 11 to get the full experience.

What is diabetes?

Diabetes (diabetes mellitus) is an energy metabolism disorder that is based on blood glucose regulatory hormone, insulin, absolute or relative deficits. It is is a group of metabolic disorders in which there are high blood sugar levels over a prolonged period. The reasons can be:

  • pancreatic insufficiency of insulin production
  • insulin resistance

On average, diabetes affects 6.4% of the world's population.

Diabetic is classified as:

  • Type I diabetes (Insulin-dependent diabetes). The reason is insulin producing beta cells destruction due to inflammation or autoimmune inflammation. The cause is unknown.
  • Type II diabetes is a so-called lifestyle disease, a condition in which cells fail to respond to insulin properly.
  • Gestational diabetes. Occurs when pregnant women without a previous history of diabetes develop high blood sugar levels.
  • Secondary diabetes (a disease associated with another disease). Occurs for example after, inflammation of the pancreas, a disorder of hormonal function, a pancreatic surgery, or a rare surgery.

In Estonia about 85-95% of all diabetics suffer from Type II diabetes. Normal blood sugar level is lower than 6.0 mmol / l. Type II diabetes can last for years unnoticed, and the disease is diagnosed only by accidental blood tests or when already the damages/complications of the disease are occurring.

Symptoms indicative of possible diabetes:

  • increased thirst and dry mouth
  • increased urination
  • fatigue/weakness
  • increased hunger
  • unexpected weight loss
  • slow-healing sores
  • recurrent infections or inflammation
  • blurred vision

Prevention and treatment involve maintaining a healthy diet, regular physical exercise, a normal body weight, and avoiding use of tobacco. The goal of diabetes treatment is to prevent its complications and keep up good quality of life.

Diabetes complications include:

  • cardiovascular disorders/disease
  • foot damage. Nerve damage in the feet or poor blood flow to the feet increases the risk of various foot complications.
  • eye damage (retinopathy)d
  • impotence
  • kidney damage
  • nerve damage (neuropathy)

Non-diabetic patients should go to a family doctor or family nurse when they have doubts for increased blood sugar or feel indicative symptoms of diabetes.

Doctors who can help

Sorry, no results found