Dr Tendai Zuze—
Diabetes is a lifelong chronic metabolic disease in which the blood sugar level is high due to the pancreas’ inability to create sufficient insulin in the body or body’s inability to use insulin effectively.If not treated or controlled properly, major complications in the body can happen such as heart attacks, kidney failure, blindness and infections that may lead to amputation. There are an estimated 347 million people in the world who suffer diabetes and the number is growing each year.
Early symptoms of diabetes can be subtle or seemingly harmless. You might not even have symptoms at all. Over time, however, you may develop diabetes complications, even if you haven’t had diabetes symptoms. Understanding possible diabetes symptoms can lead to early diagnosis and treatment — and a lifetime of better health. If you’re experiencing any of the following diabetes signs and symptoms, see your doctor.
Excessive thirst and increased urination; Excessive thirst and increased urination are classic diabetes symptoms. When you have diabetes, excess sugar (glucose) builds up in your blood. Your kidneys are forced to work overtime to filter and absorb the excess sugar. If your kidneys can’t keep up, the excess sugar is excreted into your urine along with fluids drawn from your tissues. This triggers more frequent urination, which may leave you dehydrated. As you drink more fluids to quench your thirst, you’ll urinate even more
Fatigue; you may feel persistently tired. Many factors can contribute to this. They include dehydration from increased urination and your body’s inability to function properly, since it’s less able to use sugar for energy needs.
Weight loss; Weight fluctuations also fall under the umbrella of possible diabetes signs and symptoms. When you lose sugar through frequent urination, you also lose calories. At the same time, diabetes may keep the sugar from your food from reaching your cells — leading to constant hunger. The combined effect is potentially rapid weight loss, especially if you have type 1 diabetes.
Blurred vision; Diabetes symptoms sometimes involve your vision. High levels of blood sugar pull fluid from your tissues, including the lenses of your eyes. This affects your ability to focus. Left untreated, diabetes can cause new blood vessels to form in your retina — the back part of your eye — and damage established vessels. For most people, these early changes do not cause vision problems. However, if these changes progress undetected, they can lead to vision loss and blindness.
Slow-healing sores or frequent infections; Doctors and people with diabetes have observed that infections seem more common if you have diabetes. It may be that high levels of blood sugar impair your body’s natural healing process and your ability to fight infections. For women, bladder and vaginal infections are especially common.
Tingling hands and feet; Excess sugar in your blood can lead to nerve damage. You may notice tingling and loss of sensation in your hands and feet, as well as burning pain in your arms, hands, legs and feet.
Red, swollen, tender gums; Diabetes may weaken your ability to fight germs, which increases the risk of infection in your gums and in the bones that hold your teeth in place. Your gums may pull away from your teeth, your teeth may become loose, or you may develop sores or pockets of pus in your gums — especially if you have a gum infection before diabetes develops.
The earlier the diabetes is diagnosed, the sooner treatment can begin. Diabetes is a serious condition. But with your active participation and the support of your health care team, you can manage diabetes while enjoying an active, healthy life. So when you get a chance, go and get your blood sugar checked.