How Do the Symptoms of Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes Differ?

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The symptoms of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes differ in that most people with Type 1 diabetes experience symptoms in their childhood or young adult years, whereas people with Type 2 diabetes may not experience symptoms at all until a diagnosis is made, according to WebMD. This is because Type 1 diabetes results from the body's inability to produce insulin. In Type 2 diabetes, the body is not able to use insulin correctly.

In people with Type 1 diabetes, the body no longer produces insulin because the body's immune system has mistakenly attacked and destroyed the cells responsible for insulin production, states The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease. This is in contrast to people with Type 2 diabetes, in which the body first develops a resistance to insulin. As a result, the body produces more insulin at first to keep up with the body's demand. However, over time, the pancreas begins to produce less insulin, and when the amount of insulin produced can't keep up with the body's demand, most people require treatment.

Another difference between the two types is that Type 1 diabetes cannot be prevented, whereas most cases of Type 2 diabetes can be prevented through making healthy lifestyle changes such as exercising and maintaining a healthy weight, according to WebMD.