Signs of Diabetes

It's easy to miss the signs of diabetes, especially in the early stages. However, diabetes can become serious when untreated. It is not difficult to manage diabetes, especially Type 2 Diabetes, which can usually be managed through diet and exercise. Type 1 Diabetes requires the person to inject insulin daily and maintain manageable blood sugar levels. If you have the signs of diabetes, it's important to see your medical practitioner for diabetes testing. Making lifestyle changes to manage diabetes is in your best interest for your long term health.

Knowing Diabetes
The body, brain and nervous system derive energy from glucose. Glucose, a sugar, enters the bloodstream after food is broken down. The pancreas produces insulin, which carries the glucose where it is needed to supply energy.

In a person with Type 1 Diabetes, the immune system has attacked the healthy pancreas cells, damaging their ability to produce adequate insulin to handle the glucose. In a person with Type 2 Diabetes, the insulin is ineffective, rendering the glucose resistant to insulin. In both cases, there is a buildup of glucose in the blood, resulting in high blood sugar levels. The body's inability to regulate glucose can also result in low blood sugar levels. Either condition causes symptoms ranging from mild to severe, depending on the magnitude of the imbalance.

Early Signs of Type 1 or 2 Diabetes

  • Unusual and excessive thirst; there will be a desire to drink more frequently than usual, whether exercising, at rest or in cool or hot temperatures
  • Intense hunger, even if you have just eaten a meal  
  • Frequent urination, which interrupts sleep during the night and causes you to go often during the day
  • Irritability and intense fatigue, common in the early stages of diabetes
  • Unusual and rapid weight loss

Additional Signs of Type 2 Diabetes

  • Infections occurring more often than usual, especially bladder, skin or gum infections
  • Blurred vision
  • Long healing times for cuts or bruises
  • A sensation of numbness or tingling in the extremities

What to Do
Get an evaluation by your doctor if you exhibit any of the signs of diabetes. If it is found that you do have diabetes, you can learn to manage your glucose levels, avoid the progression of symptoms and live a normal life with some simple lifestyle changes.  

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