Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes develops when your body can’t produce enough insulin or when the insulin produced doesn’t work properly.
Type 2 diabetes is far more common. About 90% of people have Type 2 diabetes, which is frequently diagnosed in mid or late adulthood.1 However, overweight teenagers and young adults are also developing this form of diabetes with an increasing frequency.
The risk of developing Type 2 is increased if you are not physically active or overweight as this causes the body’s cells to become resistant to the effects of insulin.
In the early phase of Type 2 diabetes, making small changes to your diet to lose weight and an increase in physical activity may be all that is required to achieve a normal blood glucose level.
To view our interactive 'Day in the life of a person that uses insulin' please visit this page on a desktop or laptop. Alternatively, download this PDF version.
Are you at risk of type 2 diabetes?
Type 2 diabetes usually affects people over the age of 40, although increasingly younger people are also being affected. It is more common in people of South Asian, African-Caribbean or Middle Eastern descent.
Diabetes can cause various symptoms. Symptoms common to both types of diabetes include:
- Feeling very thirsty
- Urinating frequently, particularly at night
- Feeling very tired
- Weight loss
Other symptoms of diabetes can include:
- Itchiness around the vagina or penis, or regular bouts of thrush
(a yeast infection)
- Blurred vision that is caused by the lens of your eye becoming
- Skin infections
Not everyone will experience the above symptoms and you may no symptoms at all of diabetes. Visit your GP as soon as possible if you think you have diabetes. Early diagnosis and treatment may reduce your risk of developing complications later on.
1 NHS Choices, 2012