Home Diabetes Complications Type 1 diabetes and COVID-19: risks and complications

Type 1 diabetes and COVID-19: risks and complications

by Lana Bandoim
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Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that affects insulin production in the pancreas. The immune system attacks the pancreas, making it unable to produce insulin. Type 1 diabetes can increase your risk of developing worse complications or serious illness from COVID-19.

Very Well / Nousha Ashjay

Type 1 diabetes and the risk of coronavirus infection

If you have type 1 diabetes, your risk of exposure to COVID-19 is about the same as anyone else without type 1 diabetes. However, if you are a healthcare worker or engage in activities that expose you to the virus, you are at higher risk than the general population. For example, people who work closely with the public are more likely to be exposed to the virus.

Further research required

It is not clear how type 1 diabetes affects your risk of contracting COVID-19. As researchers continue to study the virus, they may learn more about the risks for people with diabetes.

We know that managing type 1 diabetes is important for your overall health and to lower your general risk of contracting all types of infections.

Complications of type 1 diabetes and COVID-19

Having type 1 diabetes may put you at higher risk for complications from COVID-19. Underlying conditions may cause worse symptoms and outcomes.

When you have a viral infection, it becomes difficult to control your blood sugar levels, so your blood sugar levels may be higher than normal. This increases the risk of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA). During DKA, the body is unable to bring glucose (sugar) into cells and burns fat for energy, leading to the production of ketone bodies.

Diabetic ketoacidosis can be life-threatening. If you suspect you have DKA, you should seek immediate medical attention.

Type 1 diabetes treatment and COVID-19

You should continue your usual treatment for type 1 diabetes as prescribed by your healthcare provider. We don’t know if COVID-19 has affected diabetes medications or treatments, but it’s important to continue to manage your blood sugar.

Diabetic supplies replenishment

You want to have at least a 30-day supply of frequently used diabetic equipment and medications.

Check out our diabetes supplies, including:

  • medicine
  • continuous blood glucose monitor
  • insulin
  • needle and pen
  • Syringe
  • glucose meter strip
  • lancet
  • ketone strips
  • Glucagon
  • Consumables for insulin pumps


Is COVID-19 more dangerous for people with type 1 diabetes?

If you have type 1 diabetes, you may be at higher risk for complications or worse outcomes from COVID-19. For people with this underlying condition, getting sick from the virus can be more dangerous.

If I have type 1 diabetes, should I get the COVID-19 vaccine?

If you are age 16 or older and have type 1 diabetes, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that you get the COVID-19 vaccine first.

Talk to your health care provider about vaccinations. You should discuss all your medical conditions and allergies before receiving the vaccine.

Are people with type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes at different risks for coronavirus disease (COVID-19)?

The CDC has different information about type 1 and type 2 diabetes. For type 1 diabetes, the CDC indicates that: maybe There is a risk of serious illness due to the new coronavirus infection.On the other hand, the CDC states that type 2 diabetes is do Increased risk of serious illness from the virus.

How to stay safe

Everyone needs to focus on protecting themselves from the virus. There are steps you can take to lower your risk of contracting COVID-19. Unless it’s an emergency, you may not need to go to the pharmacy or hospital. You may be able to order diabetes supplies and have them delivered to your home.

Please follow the steps below to stay safe.

  • Wearing a mask
  • wash hands
  • Use of hand sanitizer
  • Don’t go out unless necessary
  • Don’t stay in a large crowd
  • avoid sick people
  • maintain 6 feet distance from others

A word from Berrywell

If you have type 1 diabetes, it’s natural to be worried about COVID-19. Many people are feeling anxious because of the fear of contracting the virus. If your emotions are affecting your quality of life, talk to your doctor about treatment or additional medications.

The information in this article is current as of the date of publication. We will update this article as new research results become available. For the latest information on coronavirus disease (COVID-19), visit our coronavirus news page.

At Verywell Health, we use only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed research, to support the facts in our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and maintain the accuracy, reliability, and authenticity of our content.

Lana Bandim

Lana Bandim is a science writer and editor with over 10 years of experience covering complex health topics.

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