Diabetes is one of the most rapidly increasing chronic ailments all over the world, and even those who aren’t suffering from it are fighting off harmful risk factors that make them more likely to develop diabetes, for instance, hypertension and stress.
Therefore, there is a great need to develop a strong understanding about the causes of diabetes, its various symptoms, treatments and essential preventive measures to keep you out of harm’s way.
What is Diabetes?
When we are suffering from diabetes, basically, our body is unable to perform its function of converting the carbohydrates within our food into readily available energy adequately. This leads to an excessive accumulation of sugar within the bloodstream. Gradually, over the course of time, it causes you to develop certain risk factors that put you at risk for suffering from countless ailments, including nerve and organ damage, heart disease, blindness and other chronic conditions.
Diabetes can occur amongst individuals of all ages and both genders, and while the early symptoms tend to be mild and slow, they can exaggerate with the slightest of dietary mistakes. Statistics reveal that nearly 1 out of every 3 people suffering from type diabetes and they don’t even know that they are suffering from such a serious ailment for the early symptoms often go unnoticed until they blow up into serious ailments.
What are the Earliest Symptoms you’ll Experience?
Patients who suffer from type 2 diabetes usually tend to experience no symptoms, or at least no ones that are noticeable. And even when these symptoms do become noticeable, the very first ones tend to less alarming than most, for instance, being excessively thirsty, unexplainable weight gain or loss, dry mouth, greater appetite, and peeing too much, as often as once every hour.
In this article, you can learn everything about this deadly and chronic ailment. Here, we have listed 22 warning signs of type II diabetes.
1. Diabetes Can Disrupt your Sex Life
Research reveals that nearly 1 in every 3 patients suffering from diabetes tend to have some kind of sexual disturbance as well. Moreover, nearly 35-70% of men who suffer from diabetes are highly likely to suffer from some extent of impotence once during their lifetime. Basically, the symptoms of diabetes cause severe damage to the blood vessels and nerves present within the genitals. This eventually leads to a lack of sensation, which makes it extremely difficult to experience an orgasm.
2. Foot Injuries Can Cause Severe Damage
When high blood pressure levels lead to diabetic nerve damage, it can cause extreme loss of sensation within the feet. This not only makes it extremely tough to feel one’s feet, but one also fails to notice serious wounds and cuts. Moreover, diabetic nerve damage also causes the arteries to harden, which restricts and slows down the blood flow received by your feet. Even the slightest of foot injuries can lead to severe soreness and gangrene. In certain cases, diabetic patients also develop severe infections that lead to amputation.
3. Teeth and Gums Can be Damaged
Abnormally high blood sugar levels tend to feed the harmful bacteria that leads to the formation of plaque, and excessive plaque accumulation can cause severe tooth decay, cavities, and gum diseases.
Certain severe gum diseases can even lead to excessive tooth loss. Basically, it works by causing the gum to weaken, along with weakening the tissues and bones that are responsible for keeping our teeth perfectly aligned. This also increases your risk factors of suffering from mouth infections.
4. Indications of Severe Problems
In several cases, patients fail to notice there symptoms until they cause a severe damage to their health, which is why type 2 diabetes is usually discovered until too much damage has been done.
Here are some risk factors that you need to keep a look-out for:
- Minor cuts and sores are taking too much time to heal because the natural healing process has slowed down.
- Frequent episodes of urinary tract infections or yeast infections.
- Skin is suffering from severe bouts of itchiness, particularly in the groin area.
5. Risk Factors than can be Controlled
There are several widely common lifestyles, bad habits and medical ailments that tend to put individuals at a much greater risk of suffering from type 2 diabetes.
Here are some risk factors that can be controlled to prevent diabetes:
- Being an excessive smoker.
- Having the lifestyle of a couch potato.
- Consuming excessive quantities of red meat, high-fat dairy products, processed meats, and sugar-loaded candies.
- Being overweight, particularly having an excess of fat around the waist and belly.
- Having abnormal levels of triglycerides and cholesterol.
6. Risk Factors cannot be Controlled
There are certain risk factors that tend to put us at a greater risk for suffering from type 2 diabetes, but unlike the factors mentioned above, these cannot be controlled.
Here are the risk factors that cannot be controlled:
A. Ethnic or Racial Background
Research reveals that African-Americans, Asians, Hispanics, and Native Americans are at a greater risk to suffer from type 2 diabetes.
B. Family History
If any of your parents, grandparents of siblings have suffered from diabetes, it increases your risk factors of suffering from it too.
Individuals who are 45 years of age of older tend to have a greater risk of suffering from type 2 diabetes.
7. Risk Factors for Women
Women tend to have a greater risk of suffering from type 2 diabetes if they have the risk factors mentioned below.
Here, take a look:
- Gave birth to a baby that weight more than 9 pounds.
- Suffered from polycystic ovary syndrome.
- Suffered from gestational diabetes during pregnancy.
8. How Does Insulin Naturally Work?
In a perfectly healthy body, the insulin is responsible for aiding the body in converting food into energy. Basically, the stomach is responsible for breaking down the carbohydrates we consume in our food and converting it into sugars. Then, these sugars entre the bloodstream, which causes the pancreas to release a mindful amount of the hormone insulin, which aids the cells in utilising the sugar to generate fuel and energy.
9. Metabolism Disturbances
If you suffer from type 2 diabetes, your cells are unable to utilise sugar effectively and adequately, therefore, there is likely to be a build-up of sugar within your bloodstream. If you suffer from a condition termed as insulin resistance, your body produce this hormone but your cells are unable to use it or respond to it effectively and normally. Usually, patients who have suffered from type 2 diabetes for some time without treating their condition, end up having pancreas that produce less insulin.
10. How Is Diabetes Diagnosed?
In order to diagnose diabetes, the doctor will obtain some blood and perform an A1c test, which will provide a detailed scan of your average blood sugar levels during the last two-three months. If you are suffering from the symptoms at this point, the doctor will also perform a routine blood glucose test to determine your current level.
11. A Healthy Diet Makes a HUGE Difference
A healthy, wholesome and well-balanced diet that contains all the essential nutrients can help you normalise your blood sugar levels by helping you shed off those extra pounds and heal your body from within. This will help you fight off the symptoms of diabetes and eliminate all the risk factors to create an effective preventive regime.
The key is to keep a healthy balance of the carbs you add to your daily diet, and you can achieve this by serving equal amounts at every mealtime. Keep track of the unhealthy fats you eat, add more protein to your diet and reduce your calorie consumption. You can even consult your doctor to recommend a nutritionist who can help you create a healthy diet plan to counter the symptoms of diabetes effectively.
12. Exercise Is Extremely Essential
Regular workout sessions, be it walking, swimming, strength training or even a sport, will help your body improve its ability to naturally produce and use insulin, along with reducing your blood sugar levels. When our body is active, it also eliminates the excess body fats, shields us against heart ailments and normalises our blood pressure levels. Be sure to get at least 30 minutes of physical activity once a day.
13. Relaxation Is Vital
Research reveals that stress can multiple our blood sugar and blood pressure levels, and while most people learn to live with heightened levels of stress and anxiety, others seek out delicious treats and sugar-loaded desserts to cope with the stress.
Instead of turning towards calorie-rich treats, it is highly advisable to eliminate stress by practicing certain relaxation techniques, such as guided visualisation, meditation, deep breathing exercises, or even yoga. You can even seek out help by talking to a family member, a trusted friend, a religious leader, or even a counsellor. If you simply cannot seem to eliminate this stress, be sure to consult a doctor.
14. Invest in Oral Medications
In certain severe cases, when a healthy diet and regular exercising doesn’t aid in normalising your blood sugar levels, consult your doctor to prescribe some oral medications.
There are several kinds of pills available in the market that aid diabetic patients in managing their symptoms, and usually these pills are combined.
Most of these pills tend to aid by aiding your pancreas in generating more insulin. While there are certain pills that aid your body in using insulin effectively, or prevent the digestion of starches, along with slowing down the breakdown of insulin.
15. Insulin: It’s Not Just for Type 1
Your doctor may prescribe insulin early in your treatment and combine it with pills. It can also help people with type 2 diabetes who develop “beta-cell failure.”
This means the cells in your pancreas no longer make insulin when blood sugar is high. If this happens, insulin will become part of your daily routine.
16. New Non-Insulin Injectables
New drugs called non-insulin injectables are available for people with type 2 diabetes. These medications cause your body to make insulin to control blood sugar levels.
17. Why is Blood Sugar Testing Important?
Blood testing is extremely important and your doctor can teach you how to use a glucose meter to monitor your blood sugar levels. This allows you to measure the effectiveness and benefits of your ongoing treatment and diet plan. The frequency and need for testing depend on several factors, such as how effectively you can manage your diabetic condition, they kind of treatment you are using, and how normal your blood sugar levels are.
Usually, experts and doctors recommend diabetic patients to monitor their blood sugar after waking up in the morning, before and after taking their meals, before and after performing exercise and lastly, before going to bed at night.
18. Heart & Artery Ailments
Statistics reveal that nearly 2 out of every 3 diabetic patients die of heart ailments and strokes. If you fail to accompany your diabetic treatment with a wholesome diet and regular exercise, you are highly likely to experience an excessive build-up of plaque within your arteries, which puts you at a greater risk to suffer from several heart ailments.
Basically, plaque is a sticky substance that causes our blood flow to slow down, while raising the risk of the development of blood clots. Eventually, this causes the arteries to become excessively hardened, which is medically termed as atherosclerosis, a disease that puts you at a great risk of suffering from a heart stroke or attack.
19. Kidney Disturbances
If you have suffered from diabetes for a long time, you are at a greater risk to suffer from chronic kidney disease. According to research, diabetes is one of the most common causes of kidney failure, in fact, it has emerged as the leading cause of nearly half of the new cases reported.
You can reduce your risk factors for suffering from kidney ailments by controlling your blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol levels. In order to keep your kidneys healthy, be sure to perform yearly tests and take all the necessary medicines that will slow down the progress of this disease.
20. Eye Ailments
When the blood sugar levels are abnormally high, they damage the small blood vessels within the body that are responsible for carrying essential nutrients and oxygen to the retina, which is an instrumental organ of your eye.
Doctors term this condition as diabetic retinopathy, and it can cause severe vision loss. Research reveals that it has emerged as one of the most rapidly increasing cause of new cases reporting blindness amongst people aged 20-74. Its earliest symptoms include haemorrhages or pools or blood visible on the retina of the eye.
21. Diabetic Nerve Pain
Over the passage of time, if your diabetic symptoms are not effectively control, the abnormally high blood sugar levels can cause severe nerve damage. It can bring about painful symptoms, such as sensations of pricking needles and pins in the hands, feet, toes and fingers, along with aches, numbness and tingling sensations.
Even though this nerve damage cannot be reversed, there are several treatments to control and prevent it. However, controlling your diabetic symptoms and blood sugar levels is essential to shield your nerves against further damage.
22. Later Symptoms of Diabetes
During the later stages of diabetes, the blood sugar levels begin to raise abnormally, which puts you at risk for suffering from other severe ailments, such as blinding headaches, fatigue, and a blurry vision.
Can Diabetes Be Prevented?
Despite all its agonizing symptoms and risk factors for causing multiple other chronic ailments, diabetes can be very easily avoided. All it takes is a mindful and wholesome diet, regular exercises, and some other healthy lifestyle habits that help you monitor your blood sugar levels and keep them low naturally.
Here are some effective preventive measures that will reduce your risk factors for both, diabetes and heart disease:
- Consume a mindful, healthy and nutrient-rich diet.
- Maintain a regular exercise regime that lasts at least 30 minutes, at least 5 days each week.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Consult your doctor about performing certain tests for prediabetes if you suspect the onset of certain symptoms.
- If you have been diagnosed with prediabetes, you can easily prevent the onset of diabetes by taking certain medications and making some simple lifestyle changes.