The Diabetes symbol is a figure that is widely recognized and embraced as a representation of the disease. The original intent of the Diabetes symbol was to resolve the United Nations debate on how they were going to handle the Diabetes crisis according to the International Diabetes Federation. Two-thirds of the population were-and still are-Diabetic or pre-Diabetic and the current health care infrastructure was not-and is not-financially or systematically able to deal with this type of pandemic. Their answer was to create a blue circle logo that gave Diabetes a global identification in order to raise awareness, show support in the fight against Diabetes, define the disease, and inform the general public in hopes of inspiring new interest and activities.
They picked a circle because it occurs in nature, has been used since the beginning of man, and it has a positive connotation. In many cultures, the circle stands for unity, as well as life and health, which are all traits that they associated with the fight against Diabetes. They chose the color blue to reflect the color of the sky and the flag of the United Nations, which also represents unity. In addition to creating the logo that would be globally recognized, the United Nations also established World Diabetes Day on December 20, 2006, which is now an annual celebration.
Juvenile Diabetes Symbol
The Juvenile Diabetes symbol refers to the logo used by the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. In January 2012, the organization decided to change its name and its logo. First, they changed their name from the long titled Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation to the shortened version of simply JDRF. The main reason for this decision was to alleviate confusion brought on by the name. The majority of Juvenile Diabetics (85%) are adults who may or may not have been diagnosed as children. To use the name Juvenile implies that the disease only strikes in childhood and adults cannot be affected, which is untrue. In addition, Juvenile Diabetes is almost always referred to as Type 1 Diabetes by doctors and researchers for these reasons.
As JDRF does work exclusively to support Type 1 Diabetes, and none to benefit Type 2 Diabetes, the name is well suited. The logo is now the shortened version of the name and has an eye catching inclusion of “T1D” which is also short for Type 1 Diabetes. The Foundation hopes that this minor change will educate the public about the differences in the disease and in the work they do.
Diabetes Medical Symbol
The Diabetes Medical symbol is comprised of a staff or rod with two snakes curled around it, topped with a round knob and flanked by wings with Diabetes in capital letters underneath it. This symbol, called a Caduceus is the general symbol for all medical professions. Some researchers trace this back to the story of Exodus 7:12 in the Bible, while other theorists attribute it to Greek mythology, claiming that the staff or rod belongs to Aesculapius (Roman) or Asklepios (Greek), the ancient gods of medicine. The symbol for Diabetes is also represented other times with a red EMS medical symbol with a single rod and snake instead of the Caduceus.
Both are easily recognized as a symbol of Diabetes and are frequently used on a number of items. The most popular are probably medical identification bracelets that Diabetics wear to alert medical personnel in case of emergency. A popular trend for people who do not like jewelry is to use a Diabetes symbol tattoo on their body in order to identify themselves as being Diabetic. This method is helpful as the jewelry can become separated from the body, or the individual can forget to wear it, but the tattoo is permanent and always on.