A person who has
type 1 diabetes must take
insulin every day because his or her
pancreas does not produce it. Insulin helps blood
sugar (glucose) enter the body's cells to be used for energy. Insulin can be
given as an injection into the fatty tissue under the skin or through an
Usually people with type 1
diabetes take a combination of types of insulin, such as a long-acting insulin
once or twice a day and a rapid-acting insulin before each meal. The amount and
type of insulin needed varies for each person. Also, the amount and type of
insulin needed changes over time, depending on age, hormones (such as during
rapid growth or pregnancy), and changes in exercise routine. In addition, a
person may need higher doses of insulin during times of illness or emotional
Other medicines may be needed if a person develops
complications from diabetes, such as kidney disease.
A person also
may need medicines to treat
high blood pressure or
high cholesterol and help prevent complications from
diabetes. If you are 40 or older, talk to your doctor about taking a low-dose
aspirin daily to help prevent
stroke, or other large blood vessel disease.
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