Often, a symptom of diabetes goes unnoticed. Without treatment, diabetes can lead to life threatening complications. Knowing diabetes symptoms can save a life.
There are three types of diabetes. One type, often called type one, occurs early in life, usually in childhood. In type one, a persons pancreas does not produce enough insulin for proper metabolism of the carbohydrate sugar called glucose. This is often due to genetic factors. The person must take insulin by injection, or other route, for all of their life to keep the disease under control.
The second kind is called type two. This form used to be most common in adults and was known as adult onset. This name had to be been revised, unfortunately, because in recent decades the incidence of type two has been increasing dramatically in children as well.
In type two, now also know as insulin resistant, the pancreas or cells are no longer responding to metabolic cues about glucose as they should. While more and more children are being diagnosed with type two, being over the age of 45 is a major risk factor.
Type two diabetes symptoms can come on slowly, escaping a persons notice. By knowing what to look for, and talking to a doctor if a symptom of diabetes is present, early detection and treatment can bring the disease under control.
Diabetes symptoms can range from mild to completely absent. They are also frequently confused with other conditions, or just with getting older, or as part of life. A common symptom of diabetes that is often overlooked is an increase in thirst. This is also often accompanied by a frequent need for urination, especially at night.
Other diabetes symptoms that are common involve eyesight. Vision can become blurred at times. This can be mistaken for just having tired eyes or as the result of allergy. If blurry vision is persistent though, a doctor should be consulted and testing done to determine the cause.
Sores that are slow in healing is another symptom of diabetes. This symptom can also happen in other serious diseases as well and should not be ignored. If a cut, blister or other break in the skin does not heal with in a week or so, or if a person has frequent skin eruptions that take a long time to go away, a person should talk to a doctor about the cause.
Numbness in the feet and hands is another symptom of diabetes that often develops somewhat later in the disease. Numbness anywhere in the body that does not have an obvious and immediate cause, like the tingling that occurs when your arm goes to sleep, should always be investigated. Neuropathy is the official name for these diabetes symptoms involving numbness and loss of muscle control in the extremities.
There are some important some risk factors for being more prone to developing type two. These include a non-caucasian ethnic background. Native Americans, African Americans, Hispanics, Asians and Pacific Islanders are all more at risk for this form of the disease. This may have to do with historical changes in diet that people with these backgrounds have undergone.
It may be that people of European decent have evolved toward tolerating starchy foods for historical reasons. This does not mean that caucasian people are immune to type two, however. It can occur in all ethnic groups. For anyone, changes in diet can often help with symptoms and in preventing the disease from starting.
High cholesterol levels is another symptom. This could be because people with the disease more often eat high cholesterol foods, or that the disease itself has some effect on cholesterol metabolism. High cholesterol is another condition that should not be left untreated, no matter what the cause.
Inactivity is also a significant risk factor. Inactivity is linked to becoming overweight which is another risk factor. Getting more exercise and loosing weight will reduce chances of type two onset and help if a person already has it. Activity strengthens the heart improving circulation and helps in removing toxins from the body. Exercise also improves immune function.
If indications of diabetes are present, they should not be ignored. Left untreated this disease can progress to heart failure, blindness, hearing loss, amputation of the feet and even death. The good news is that this is a disease that can be successfully treated and controlled through medication and changes in lifestyle.
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