18 Early Warning Signs of Diabetes You Should Not Ignore

12. Yeast Infections The sugary environments are conducive to the growth of yeast and bacteria. A vaginal yeast infection that is called candidiasis, is a condition… Simi - September 28, 2017
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12. Yeast Infections

The sugary environments are conducive to the growth of yeast and bacteria. A vaginal yeast infection that is called candidiasis, is a condition that is characterized by itching and irritation around the vagina. When the blood sugar levels are higher than normal, women with type 2 diabetes face a greater risk of infection from yeast and bacteria. Most women have yeast but don’t usually show the effects of these microorganisms. However, when they grow in number due to the conducive environment they can cause extreme problems. Women who cannot control their diabetes have a problem fighting off infections from yeast. It becomes a challenge to get rid-off any infection once it has started developing. The infection from yeast will cause itching, general discomfort, and pain with urination. Apart from the vaginal area being affected by this infection, other areas can also equally be affected. Yeast can cause problems in the moist parts of the feet and mouth.

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The notable thing is that the yeast normally grows in environments that have sugar because they feed on sugar. If your diabetes is not being controlled, your blood sugar levels increase. This results in high amounts of yeast growing and you can develop a yeast infection. Therefore, controlling your sugar level may assist reduce this risk of infection. Some yeasts can cause serious health problems and you need to get regular screening processes. You need to consult your doctor to plan a screening schedule. Maintaining your blood sugar levels may help reduce your risk of infection. The positive thing is that treatment for yeast infection for those suffering from diabetes is the same as for others who don’t have it.

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13. Skin Problems

Most of the time skin problems are clear signs of diabetes. The skin condition problems can be worse for those who already have already diabetes type 2 and it can cause to have new ones. Apart from the flow of blood causing skin problems, they are also caused by bacteria and fungi. For those with chronic type 2 diabetes and who have hyperglycemia, the blood flow to the skin is reduced. This causes extensive damage to the blood vessels and nerves. Reduced blood flow leads to the transformation of the skin’s pigment called collagen. As a result, the skin’s texture, appearance and ease to heal are also affected. Worse still, the damaged skin cells can affect you from sweating appropriately and increase your ability to sense temperature and pressure.

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The bacterial infections cause significant problems to those having type 2 diabetes. The skin problems are usually painful, swell and look red. Unfortunately, the problem escalates with an increase in blood sugar levels and they may increase in number and size. The secret is to ensure that blood sugar levels are always well managed. The extreme bacterial infection may cause deep skin infections that may require your doctor to pierce and drain the fluid. This procedure can be uncomfortable for some people but it’s the only way to go about it in your healing process. The good part about skin problems is that they are treatable when they are detected earlier. Controlling blood sugar levels will prevent skin conditions. You need to consult your doctor if you have skin infections so that you can be treated earlier with antibiotics.

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14. Sweet-Smelling Breath

Not all sweet-smelling breath is good. There are some children who have sweet-smelling breath and this could be a sign of diabetes. It stands to reason that most children with this smell stand a good chance that they may have diabetes. Studies have also shown that gases in the breath of adults are associated with blood glucose and blood ketone levels who have type 1 and 2 diabetes. It has been proven that approximately one in four children who have type 1 diabetes are not diagnosed until diabetic ketoacidosis has developed. This is an extreme and dangerous hyperglycemic condition and is an indication that your diabetes is out of control. If diabetes is not being managed appropriately, there is a lack of insulin that helps deliver glucose to the cells.

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This lack of glucose which is the main source of energy for the body results in the body using fat instead to get energy. The main byproduct of this process is ketone which then accumulates in the blood and slowly into the urine. One type of ketone referred to as acetone produces a fruity smell. Therefore, if you have ketones in your body then you will be producing this fruity smell in your breath. The studies have also shown that it is really possible that measuring the breaths of children will help identify diabetes earlier. Children undergo blood tests to test if they have diabetes which can be uncomfortable for them. Furthermore, there are studies aimed at linking breath acetone and blood ketone levels. Should it be proven that there is that link, then it would be possible to prevent the development of diabetic ketoacidosis in children with diabetes who are already sick.

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15. Hearing loss

When we talk about hearing loss, it’s associated with old age. It comes after years of exposure to loud noises and sounds. It is also possible to suffer hearing loss as a result of an accident or injury. Some infections can cause severe and lasting damage to the hearing. When you suffer from hearing loss, sound signals travel from your ear to your brain. There are two main ways in which your body suffers from hearing loss. The first is damage to the auditory nerve. This causes permanent hearing loss and is age-related. The second is a build-up of fluids or a blockage in the ear. This comes from an earwax residue, an ear infection, a perforated eardrum or damage to any of the delicate bones inside the ear. Diabetes is increasingly linked to hearing loss.

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They conducted hearing tests on a sample of economically active Americans. It was found that those with diabetes or pre-diabetes were more likely to have some form of mild hearing loss. Researchers looked at other reasons for hearing loss such as exposure to consistent loud noise, age, and economic status. Even factoring these issues into the equation did not change the results. There was a definite link between diabetes and hearing loss. It seems that diabetes and the raised glucose levels it causes may decrease the amount of blood and oxygen that gets to the sensitive nerves and blood vessels of the ear. This lack of oxygen causes damage to the ear which results in hearing loss.

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16. Snoring

Sleep apnea is a breathing problem that the sufferer experiences during sleep. It is a widespread disorder that has its roots in several health issues. When you have sleep apnea, your breathing stops for 10 seconds or longer while you are sleeping. There is a disruption in the oxygen supply to the brain and body when you stop breathing. Sleep apnea sufferers stop breathing like this more than once a night. There are three types of sleep apnea. The first is Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). It is the most common form of sleep apnea. The throat muscles relax during deep sleep, disrupting breathing. The second type is Central Sleep Apnea. It occurs when the brain fails to send proper signals to your breathing muscles, thereby disrupting breathing. The final type is Complex Sleep Apnea Syndrome. It’s quite rare and is a combination of obstructive and central sleep apnea.

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When you have sleep apnea, you tend to snore very loudly. Your partner or an observer may see you have an episode where you stop breathing. You might wake up suddenly in the middle of the night feeling breathless. It leaves you tired and irritated because you feel like you haven’t slept well. After much research, it seems that there is a link between OSA and diabetes. A study has found that people with severe OSA are up to 30% more at risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Those with mild to moderate OSA are at about a 23% greater chance of getting type 2 diabetes. The researchers took factors such as age, weight, and lifestyle into account when reaching their conclusions. OSA raises blood sugar levels. It disrupts the supply of oxygen to the lungs. This, in turn, interrupts the metabolism of glucose.

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17. Dry scalp

If you find yourself struggling with dry scalp, it could be a symptom of diabetes. This is a symptom that won’t appear in isolation. It will occur in conjunction with other symptoms. Dry scalp and dandruff are not the same. They both present with an itchy scalp and falling white flakes. Dry scalp occurs when the skin gets irritated and flakes off the scalp. Dandruff is caused by an oversupply of oil on the scalp. The oil captures excess dead skin cells. They build up, and then they fall from the scalp. Before you jump to conclusions, take the time to figure out which one of the two you have. You can tell the difference by looking at the appearance of the flakes. Dandruff flakes are more prominent and look oily. The skin flakes shed when you have dry scalp are smaller and look less hydrated.

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A dry scalp is the same as dry skin. A simple lack of moisture causes it. In fact, dry scalp is usually accompanied by dry skin on other areas of the body. Exposure to cold, dry air can trigger it. As you age, the skin on your scalp also dries out. An allergy to something your scalp came into contact with can also result in a dry scalp. It’s possible you may be allergic to the shampoo or styling gel you use. The reason that dry scalp may be diabetes indicates that the skin cells become dehydrated. When your glucose levels are high, the body responds by causing excessive urination to get rid of it. At the same time, the body is losing a lot of fluids. This is what results in excessive thirst which is a symptom of diabetes. It also results in the drying out of the skin and scalp.

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18. “Pins and Needles” Sensation in Hands and Feet

One of the more common symptoms of diabetes is an unexplained tingling in your arms, legs, hands, and feet. We often describe it as “pins and needles“. This is caused by peripheral neuropathy or nerve damage. It is a result of high blood glucose levels damaging nerves and nerve endings, as well as blood vessels. The causes of tingling and numbness from diabetes is usually peripheral neuropathy, or nerve damage in the arms, legs, hands, and feet. This complication results from high blood glucose levels damaging nerves and blood vessels. Tingling and numbness are usually the earliest signs of Type 2 diabetes.

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The most common questions asked when a person is diagnosed with diabetes include:

  • What type of diabetes do I have?
  • How will I be able to manage it?
  • Do I need to take any kind of medication?
  • Do I need to check my blood sugar? If so, how often and when?
  • What should my blood sugar level be?
  • Is there a way I can prevent any of the complications like heart, kidney and eye diseases?
  • What kind of eating plan should I follow?
  • What are healthy fats and sugars?
  • Can I still work and travel?
  • Will I die?

If you have been diagnosed with any of the diabetes types it’s important to remember it isn’t a death sentence. While there isn’t a cure, making the necessary changes to your diet and lifestyle will keep in under control and you can continue to lead a normal life. It is only when we ignore the early warning signs that diabetes can, in fact, become life-threatening.