Diabetes refers to a group of diseases which cause a spike in blood sugar levels. The most common types are type 2 diabetes, type 1 diabetes, prediabetes, and gestational diabetes. In the United States, there are roughly 29 million people suffering from some form of the disease, and most of the time they are unaware of having it for several years.
There are early warning signs of the disease, but they are often disregarded as common health issues. To see whether you’re suffering from prediabetes or any other form of the chronic disease, check out these 15 warning signs.
Temporary blurred vision during odd hours could be a major sign of having diabetes. This condition can come and go but usually becomes worse as time passes. If left untreated, retinal blood vessels can begin to leak fluid, further distorting vision and ultimately causing permanent blindness.
Discolored patches on the skin
People who have high risks of diabetes might experience suffer from acanthosis nigricans – a common condition which causes discoloration of skin folds. The color of skin folds will become darker due to a manifestation of insulin resistance of the skin.
Dry mouth can be a clear warning sign of diabetes. It also exacerbates the effects of diabetes by increasing blood glucose levels, causing extensive bodily harm. Dry mouth is not just a symptom of increased blood sugar levels, but it’s also a leading cause of it.
When blood sugar levels become abnormally high for long periods of time (hyperglycemia), glucose from the blood is unable to penetrate cell walls, either caused by a lack of or a resistance to insulin. Our bodies cannot convert food into energy efficiently so we feel the need to eat more.
Having a high blood glucose level makes the kidneys work overtime in order to process excess sugar. Because our kidneys process more water in a shorter period of time, people suffering from hyperglycemia will also show the need to urinate more often – a condition known as polyuria.
Excessive thirst is a side effect of hyperglycemia and polyuria. Frequently experiencing excessive thirst is another telltale sign of diabetes. Hyperglycemia makes the kidneys work harder to process excess sugar, making a person need to urine more often, ultimately leading to dehydration.
Your body will resort to burning fat in order to create sufficient energy to power your body. When it does this, your liver will produce dangerous levels of ketones which can lead to a life-threatening condition called diabetic ketoacidosis. Excess buildup of ketones will make you feel nauseous.
Diabetes can cause skin dryness and blood circulation damage. People suffering from diabetes will experience itching is localized spots on the body, caused by poor blood flow. Most cases of itching occur on the legs and feet. Discolored skin can become itchy.