Type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes are the two most common types of this condition (see Diabetes Types). There are a couple of things to keep in mind when comparing type 1 and type 2 diabetes symptoms. Type 1 diabetes usually begins before the age of 40, with most people developing it as teenagers. Symptoms usually develop more quickly, and, in some cases, the first symptom of type 1 diabetes can be a life-threatening coma, known as diabetic ketoacidosis, or DKA.
Often, children will be vomiting, a sign of DKA, and will be mistakenly diagnosed as having gastroenteritis (more commonly known as the stomach flu
). However, new-onset diabetes is different from a GI infection, because frequent urination often accompanies continued vomiting, whereas if the vomiting is caused by a GI "bug," there is a decrease in urination, due to dehydration.
Type 2 diabetes is a condition that usually begins during middle age or beyond. The symptoms of type 2 diabetes usually develop gradually and are not as noticeable as in type 1 diabetes. In fact, it is not uncommon for people to have no symptoms of type 2 diabetes in the beginning, prior to being diagnosed; instead, they are diagnosed with diabetes after a routine laboratory test.