Diabetes is a serious condition that can cause severe complications like coronary artery disease (CAD) and stroke, if not treated properly. But, over 1/3 of Americans, don’t even know they have diabetes. The longer you go without controlling diabetes, the higher the risks. This doesn’t have to be you. Diabetes can easily be detected and kept under control and maybe even reverse or stop it all together. If you’ve experienced any of the signs below, you should consider talking with your doctor and getting tested.
Frequent urination (polyuria):
People with diabetes don’t break down the food into sugar adequately, and the unprocessed sugar remains in the bloodstream. The extra sugar in the bloodstream causes the kidneys to work harder to try to get rid of the excess of glucose in the blood and makes more urine.
Increased thirst (polydipsia):
The excessive sugar in the bloodstream will make kidneys produce more urine to eliminate it. As your body increases the production of urine and you urinate more frequently, you will lose fluids and become dehydrated. As a consequence, your body will try to replenish the loss of fluids. Hence you will feel a constant need to drink water.
Increased hunger (polydipsia):
With diabetes, your body becomes resistant to insulin. The high levels of glucose in the blood will make your body produce too much insulin after eating high carbohydrate foods, and the glucose levels will drop instantly. As a result, you become shaky and will tend to crave for sugar or carbs.
Dry mouth (xerostomia):
One of the most common symptoms of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes is dry mouth, and it can be a consequence of the effects of high sugar levels in the blood. High blood sugar levels cause frequent urination, as kidneys create more urine to eliminate the excess of sugar. As a consequence of the increased urination, the body loses fluid and becomes dehydrated. If you don’t drink enough water to replenish the loss of fluids, your mouth becomes dry.
In people with diabetes, headaches tend to occur due to changes in blood sugar levels. The more ups and downs your blood sugar experiments, the more likely you’ll get a headache. The headaches occur as a response of the blood vessels in the brain to hormone changes.
Another consequence of high blood sugar levels is that it causes glucose to build up in the lens of your eyes. As a result, the lens in your eyes will swell your vision will become distorted. The good news is that the symptom is reversible once your blood sugar levels reach normal levels.
High levels of sugar in the bloodstream make it a breeding ground for yeast and bacteria that cause infection. Getting recurrent infections is the perfect sign of diabetes. So if this is your case, and you haven’t been diagnosed, your doctors should check for diabetes.
Cuts and bruises that don’t heal:
When the sugar levels in your organism are continuously high, it narrows down the blood vessels, stiffens the arteries, and decreases the function of red blood cells. If the blood vessels are narrowed, blood and oxygen won’t be able to reach the wound and provide the adequate nutrients and oxygen for it to heal. Thus your body’s healing effects will be slower and less effective.
High sugar level causes sexual dysfunction in both men and women due to damages to the blood vessel and nerves. Around 35 to 75% of men with diabetes will experience erectile dysfunction. To get erection men don’t only need to be sexually stimulated, they also need healthy nerves and blood vessels. Women may experience vaginal dryness which can make intercourse uncomfortable and they may have difficulties to reach an orgasm due to the loss of sensation in the genital area.
Unplanned weight loss:
This happens to people with type 1 diabetes. It’s a product of two things that occur in your body as a consequence of high blood sugar levels. First, part of the weight you lose is because of the water you lose due to excessive urination. And second, as your body produces less insulin, it won’t be able to get glucose from the blood and into the body to be used as energy. As a consequence, your body will start to burn fat and muscle to obtain energy.