A risk factor is something that increases your likelihood of getting a disease or condition. It is possible to develop
type 1 diabetes
with or without the risk factors listed below. There are no known definite risk factors. However, the more risk factors you have, the greater your likelihood of developing type 1 diabetes. The main risk factors include the following:
If you have a parent, brother, or sister with type 1 diabetes, you (or your child) are at greater risk of having it, too. Scientists continue to believe that genetic factors play a role in the development of type 1 diabetes, but which genes is unclear.
You are at an increased risk of type 1 diabetes if your ethnicity is: Northern EuropeanMediterraneanAfrican AmericanHispanicNative American
Other factors that may increase your child's risk of type 1 diabetes include: Cystic fibrosisBottle-feeding or short duration of breastfeedingHigh birth weightObesity
Mothers age at childbirth (over 35 years)
Causes of diabetes. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
website. Available at:
Updated June 2014. Accessed September 8, 2015.
Schatz D, Krischer J, Horne G, et al. Islet cell antibodies predict insulin-dependent diabetes in United States school age children as powerfully as in unaffected relatives.
J Clin Invest.
TRIGR study: a new trial investigates environmental triggers in type 1 diabetes [press release]. Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International website. Available at:
http://www.jdrf.org. August 7, 2002.
Accessed December 31, 2012.
Type 1 diabetes.
American Diabetes Association
website. Available at:
http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/type-1/?loc=DropDownDB-type1. Accessed December 31, 2012.
Last reviewed September 2015 by Kim A. Carmichael, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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