01/10Chronically high blood sugar levels can cause problems
Diabetes is a serious disease which continues to be one of the most non-communicable burdens affecting people globally. Statistics have pointed out that an estimated 462 million suffer from the condition, with India being the Diabetes capital.
With the pandemic, there's also been a concerning rise in the number of people suffering from 'new diabetes' or being diagnosed with diabetes, thanks to the prolonged sedentary lifestyle and poor eating habits.
02/10Be on the lookout for these early signs of Type-2 diabetes
Diabetes, primarily, is a disease characterised by disrupted blood sugar levels and insulin resistance, which starts off in the pancreas but the effects can be felt through all parts of the body. Just like it's a common misconception that diabetes is caused by having too much sugar (it's a hormonal condition), there are, in fact, quite a few warning signs that the body tries to alert you, if your blood sugar levels start to go for a toss.
It's not just important to acknowledge these early symptoms, but also make sure that you get the proper care, remedial help to manage and treat diabetes in time.
While some of the signs like feeling too parched, or frequent hunger pangs are common, take a look at some of these underlying, less-common signs to spot signs of high blood sugar levels:
A diabetes diagnosis is associated with slower healing of wounds, and frequent cuts and bruises. What it can also do is, impact the colour and texture of skin.
Having dry, itchy patches of skin is a common warning sign of diabetes which people end up ignoring. This is known as 'acanthosis nigricans', which can set in when you have disrupted thyroid levels as well, and appear as dark folds around your neck, armpits or the groin region. Having excess insulin levels in the body can make the skin feel thicker than usual and manifest into such signs.
04/10Experiencing vision problems
Vision difficulties, including blindness, are often associated with long-term side-effects of diabetes. However, it's often not realized that some of these symptoms, including vision problems can creep in quite early, and need to be attended to at the earliest. One of the most pressing signs of vision difficulty, when you have Type-2 diabetes, can be hazy vision, blurriness. This can happen when blood sugar levels remain higher than usual, and damage some critical blood vessels located in and around the eye. Extremely high sugar levels can also lead to temporary vision loss, swelling or changes in vision.
05/10Frequent gum bleeding, dry mouth
Our oral health and hygiene has a direct link with our blood sugar levels, believe it or not. In fact, experts often point out that having a 'dry mouth', along with feeling parched too often or thirsty can be a commonly missed sign of rising blood sugar levels.
Dry mouth is medically also referred to as xerostomia, and accompanies diabetes. While there exists no exact cause to experiencing this symptom , any signs of poor or worsening oral hygiene, including dry lips, difficulty chewing food, frequent sores or cuts in the tongue, dryness in the mouth could be signs that you should book yourself a blood sugar test.
06/10Numbness, tingling in fingers and feet
A precursor which can be experienced with Type-2 diabetes can be tingling or numbness in the feet or the hands. Apart from a sense of dizziness and fatigue, disrupted blood sugar levels can impact nervous sensations, make one experience tremors, numbness in the fingers and extremities. This symptom can also worsen over time and develop into what is called 'diabetic neuropathy'. Again, while such a symptom may be experienced by someone later in life, long after being diagnosed with Type-2 diabetes, it can also stem as a warning sign to watch out for, or when you have prediabetes.
07/10Visiting the washroom often
Frequently urinating, more than usual, can be a sign that your blood sugar levels are flaring without notice. While we all take bathroom breaks to be a sign of a healthy bladder, having to visit the bathroom often, frequently urinating can be experienced when the kidneys find it hard to regulate the levels of blood glucose levels, which then pass out in the form of urine. A particular sign to note is, if you feel the urge to urinate more frequently at nighttime.
Fatigue as a symptom can invite worry. It can be common to experience feeling tired, exhausted on an everyday basis, feeling a little too drained or fatigued can also be a sign that your blood sugar levels are off the toss, and in fact, associated with 'diabetes fatigue syndrome'.
While there is no exact cause or reason as to why this happens, it is believed that fluctuating or erratic blood glucose levels can fail to supply needed energy in the body, which can make you feel tired often. Having a poor diet, bad sleep and other hormonal imbalances can also contribute to the problems.
Mood swings, low mood or feeling mentally drained could be taken as signs of worsening mental health or stress. However, even the slightest disruption in your blood sugar levels could make you feel anxious, irritable or even hangry (angry because of extreme hunger pangs). Blood sugar highs, or even lows could be associated with heightened feelings of worry, anxiety and mood irritability.
However, do remember that irritability can't always be the cause of diabetes. Mood changes, when you have diabetes usually appear along with other signs of high/low blood sugar levels, and not individually.
10/10Unexpected, unusual weight loss
With high blood sugar levels which make the body insulin resistant, weight management can turn into a daunting issue. While a lot of diabetics find it strugglesome to lose weight and keep BMI levels under check, a warning sign could be losing weight drastically, without trying.
While unexpected weight loss gain be a symptom related to multiple health threats, when your blood sugar levels are particularly imbalanced, the extra glucose levels can reach the kidneys and get passed off as urine, which may make you lose weight easily, even if you are trying to not lose weight, or think you are eating more than usual. There have also been studies which have attested that those who experience weight loss as a symptom are more likely to experience complications like diabetic retinopathy or nephropathy than others.