Increased frequency of urination
Because the cells in the body can’t absorb glucose, the kidneys try to excrete as much glucose as possible. As a result, sufferers urinate more often than normal people and pass more than 5 liters of urine a day. This continued even at night. The patient wakes up several times to urinate. That’s a sign the kidneys are trying to get rid of all the extra glucose in the blood.
With the loss of water from the body due to frequent urination, sufferers feel thirsty and need lots of water. Excessive thirst means your body is trying to replenish that lost fluid. Frequent ‘peeing’ and excessive thirst are “ways your body tries to manage high blood sugar,” explains Dr. Collazo-Clavell as quoted from Health.com.
Blood sugar levels that are too high can also cause rapid weight loss. Because the insulin hormone does not get glucose for the cells, which is used for energy, the body breaks down protein from muscles as an alternative source of fuel.
Excessive hunger, is another sign of diabetes. When blood sugar levels drop, the body thinks it’s not being fed and wants the glucose that cells need more.
The skin becomes problematic
Itchy skin, perhaps due to dry skin, can often be a warning sign of diabetes, as can other skin conditions, such as dark skin around the neck or underarms.
Infections, cuts, and bruises that don’t heal quickly are other signs of diabetes. This usually occurs because the blood vessels are damaged due to the excessive amount of glucose that surrounds the blood vessels and arteries. Diabetes reduces the efficiency of endothelial progenitor cells, or EPCs, which travel to the injury site and help blood vessels heal the wound.
“Diabetes is considered a state of immunosuppression,” said Dr. Collazo-Clavell explained. That means increased susceptibility to various infections, although the most common are candida and other fungal infections. Fungi and bacteria thrive in an environment rich in sugar.
The high glucose content in the urine makes the genital area look like thrush and consequently causes swelling and itching.
Tiredness and irritability
“When people have high blood sugar levels, depending on how long they’ve been feeling it, they often feel unwell,” said Dr. Collazo-Clavell. Getting up to go to the bathroom several times at night makes people tired. As a result, when people are tired they tend to be irritable
Blurred vision or or occasionally seeing flashes of light is a direct result of high blood sugar levels. Leaving your blood sugar uncontrolled for a long time can cause permanent damage, possibly even blindness. The blood vessels in the retina become weak after years of hyperglycemia and micro-aneurysms, which release fatty proteins called exudates.
Tingling or numbness
Tingling and numbness in the hands and feet, along with a burning pain or swelling, are signs that the nerves are being damaged by diabetes. Still like vision, if blood sugar levels are allowed to run rampant for too long, nerve damage can become permanent.
In diabetes, high blood sugar acts like a poison. Diabetes is often called a ‘ Silent Killer ‘ if symptoms are ignored and complications are found. If you have these symptoms, immediately test your blood sugar or consult a health worker.