Diabetes is a disease that can affect the entire body and cause various symptoms. Many common and unusual symptoms are due to uncontrolled high blood sugar levels. Early recognition of symptoms can be key to successful treatment and management of the disease. Diabetes describes a group of health conditions that affect the way the body converts sugar into energy. The most common types of diabetes are type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes. Without proper care and control, diabetes can lead to various complications. Therefore, it is important for people to be aware of the common and unusual symptoms that may indicate diabetes.
This article looks at some unusual signs of diabetes, as well as the most common warning signs and when to contact a doctor.
5 unusual symptoms
Some possible unusual symptoms of diabetes may include:
1. Skin changes
Diabetes can potentially affect many parts of the body, including the skin. When blood sugar levels get too high, it can often show up on the skin. For example, diabetes can cause dark patches to appear on the skin, especially in skin folds such as the back of the neck, armpits, and groin. This condition is known as acanthosis nigricans. Although the exact cause of this condition is unknown, there is strong evidence that it is related to insulin resistance and occurs when a person has too much insulin in their blood. High blood sugar can also cause other skin conditions, such as diabetic dermopathy and eruptive xanthomatosis. In addition, high blood sugar can also lead to dry and itchy skin.
2. Poor wound healing
High blood sugar can cause wounds to heal slowly, poorly, or not at all. High blood sugar can affect the function of white blood cells, which play an important role in the immune system. If they cannot function properly, the body is less able to heal wounds. High blood sugar can also affect blood circulation and lead to nerve damage. Poor blood circulation can slow healing because blood moves more slowly, which can make it harder for the body to deliver nutrients to wounds. Due to nerve damage, a person may not notice the sore and may not be able to treat it properly.
3. Changes in vision
High blood sugar can also damage the eyes and affect a person’s vision. High blood sugar can damage the small blood vessels in the eye, causing them to weaken and swell. These delicate blood vessels can leak blood and other fluids, which can cause swelling that can distort vision. Over time, uncontrolled blood sugar levels can lead to serious eye problems, which can affect vision and lead to vision loss.
4. Fruity breath
Many people associate bad breath with a recent meal or poor dental hygiene. However, it can also be a potential sign of diabetes, most often type 1. A fruity breath odor is often a sign of diabetic ketoacidosis. This term refers to the body’s inability to obtain energy from glucose; it then enters a state of ketosis and begins to burn fat for nourishment. When the body can’t make or use insulin effectively, blood sugar levels rise. In fact, insulin allows the glucose present in the blood to enter the cells so that they can use it for energy. Without insulin, the body uses fat for energy, releasing acidic byproducts called ketones. Acetone is a type of ketone, which is the fruity-smelling substance commonly found in some nail polish removers. If a person has fruity breath, it could suggest that he has high levels of ketones in his blood due to his diabetes. When the body produces too many ketones too quickly, they can build up to dangerous levels in the body and cause serious complications.
5. Recurring infections
Another potential sign of diabetes is an increased risk of infections. This is because high blood sugar levels can weaken a person’s immune system and allow infections to develop more quickly. For example, a person with diabetes may be more likely to get urinary tract infections and yeast infections.
Common Warning Signs
Diabetes can manifest itself with a wide range of potential symptoms – what one person experiences may differ from another. However, it is proven that the most common symptoms of diabetes are:
unexplained weight loss
Also, others may mention the three cops of diabetes as common warning signs. This term refers to:
Polyuria: Frequent urination to help the body get rid of excess glucose that the kidneys filter into the blood.
Polydipsia: increased thirst to compensate for fluid loss during urination.
Polyphagia: Increased appetite due to glucose and fluid loss due to excessive urination.
In addition to the above, other signs of diabetes may include:
tingling in the hands or feet
slow healing wounds
infections more frequent than usual
When to contact a doctor
It is strongly recommended to contact a medical professional if you experience symptoms such as frequent urination, increased thirst, and fatigue. A doctor can perform tests to measure a person’s blood sugar level, such as the A1C test, which can help diagnose diabetes.
It is also important to consider the risk factors for diabetes, which can make a person more susceptible to developing this disease. Possible risk factors for different types of diabetes may includeTrusted Source:
Type 1: Having a close relative with type 1 diabetes.
Type 2: Having prediabetes, obesity, or a family history of type 2 diabetes.
Gestational: having gestational diabetes in a previous pregnancy, having given birth to a baby weighing more than 3 kg, or having polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
After being diagnosed with diabetes, a doctor will recommend regular checkups every 3 to 6 months. Trusted source to help monitor a person’s health and make sure they follow their treatment plan.
Diabetes can affect the entire body and cause various symptoms, which can make it difficult to recognize the signs of the disease. It is important to be alert to the most common symptoms, such as increased thirst and frequent urination, but also to the more unusual symptoms, such as fruity breath and blurred vision. If you have any unusual symptoms that may indicate diabetes, it is advisable to make an appointment with a doctor. A health professional can assess symptoms and run tests to confirm or rule out the condition. Once diagnosed, the doctor can recommend the most appropriate treatment.
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