Type 1 diabetes basics

Young woman with type 1 diabetes checks her blood sugar

What is type 1 diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is a chronic autoimmune disease. This means that it doesn’t go away. Anyone can be diagnosed at any age, though it usually is diagnosed in childhood or adolescence. 

In T1D, the body’s immune system attacks the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. Insulin is an essential hormone that helps the body turn food into energy. People living with T1D must take insulin by injection or insulin pump to survive.

Living with T1D requires extra work, but with the right support and information, you or your loved one can lead a fulfilling, active life. 

Symptoms of type 1 diabetes

The most common warning signs of type 1 diabetes (T1D) are: 

  • Frequent urination 
  • Increased thirst and dry mouth 
  • Increased appetite 
  • Fatigue 
  • Unexplained weight loss 

The onset of symptoms can be sudden, especially in very young children. If you or someone you know is experiencing any of these symptoms, contact your medical provider immediately. 

Learn more about T1D

Statistics on T1D around the globe

The science behind T1D

Recognize the early warning signs of T1D

Onset triggers associated with T1D

Tests and other factors that lead to a T1D diagnosis

Therapies for treating type 1 diabetes

Types of insulin and administration methods

Get the facts about living with T1D

Providing the most accurate and comprehensive global picture of T1D in history

Get support

We’re all here because we’ve all been there.

<a href="https://www.breakthrought1d.org/newly-diagnosed/">Newly Diagnosed</a>
Newly Diagnosed

Just diagnosed with type 1 diabetes? We have the information you need to understand the condition and live a healthy life.   

<a href="https://www.breakthrought1d.org/daily-management/">Daily Management</a>
Daily Management

Learn about the tools, therapies, and technologies available to manage T1D. 

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Find Your Community

Connect with people from all over the world who are managing T1D in their own way. Find your local chapter, attend an event, or join an online community summit.

Early detection for T1D

T1D develops in stages over time. Detecting T1D in its early stages can prevent life-threatening complications. You may also be eligible for research studies to advance treatments and cures or FDA-approved therapies that delay the onset of T1D.