A Rising Childhood Disease
Why are We Seeing the Huge Increase in Type 2 Diabetes?
We begin with some basic fundamentals regarding diabetes, categorized as type 1 and type 2. Type 1 diabetes, or diabetes insipidus, is characterized by a failure of either a) the antidiuretic hormone (known as ADH) receptors in the kidney, or b) the posterior pituitary gland to produce enough ADH. This causes an overproduction of urine that can lead to dehydration or even death if the person suffering from this disease does not get enough water. Type 2 diabetes, or diabetes mellitus, is characterized by an excess of glucose in the blood and is the focus of my writing.
Now more than ever, there is an increase in the number of cases of childhood type 1 diabetes. According to Incidence Trends Over the Last 40 years, “The best evidence available suggests that childhood diabetes showed a stable and relatively low incidence over the first half of the 20th century, followed by a clear increase that began at some time around or soon after the middle of the century.” A global survey also determined that cases of childhood diabetes have increased in excess of 350 times the incidence rate since the beginning of the 20th century (Karvonen et. al., 2000). How can this be if we are living through such a sophisticated and advanced time in health and medical care? Are parents creating these scenarios? Are physicians? What factors could be contributing to this rise?
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