Diabetes is known as one of the “silent killer” diseases. More than 23 million people in the United States have diabetes; only about three-quarters of them know they have the disease. The other six million sufferers are not diagnosed until the symptoms of the disease worsen. When the disease is beginning, the signs of diabetes seem harmless; the victim does not seek medical advice, the disease progresses, and the symptoms continue without treatment.
The first symptoms of diabetes are usually very mild and are often overlooked. Many people with symptoms postpone seeking medical care because they feel the symptoms are too trivial to warrant medical treatment. Other people have hectic lifestyles and endure symptoms because it is difficult for them to make time for medical tests.
The first tell-tale signs of diabetes are as follows:
Increased frequency of urination
The need to urinate much more often than normal is usually the first sign a person with diabetes will notice. This symptom may seem like nothing more than an inconvenience. However, it should be taken seriously as it is caused by the kidneys having to work overtime to filter the blood when it contains high levels of sugar.
The urge to drink unusually large amounts of fluid is another early sign of diabetes that seems trivial, but is caused by the body’s need to ingest more fluids to balance the loss caused by increased kidney activity.
An unusual increase in hunger does not seem serious, but it is caused by a lack of insulin in the body. Energy levels drop and the body signals hunger because it needs food to restore energy levels to normal.
Unexplained weight loss
Many people welcome weight loss, but if it occurs suddenly and is not associated with deliberate attempts to lose weight, it should be taken as a sign that something is wrong. A medical check-up is always advisable in cases of unexplained weight loss.
Feeling unusually fatigued
Feelings of fatigue occur when there is not enough insulin in the body to effectively absorb blood sugar, the body’s energy levels drop, and the feeling of tiredness afflicts the sufferer.
Feeling strangely irritable
Irritability is caused by low energy levels in the body. The patient feels sluggish and normal activities become challenging. Depression is often experienced alongside irritability.
Blurred vision or any other unusual vision disturbances should always be investigated immediately. If the problem is caused by the swelling of the lenses of the eyes, it could cause blindness.
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