Stethoscope and a syringe on a diabetes test

The Early Signs of Diabetes

October 12, 2023

Diabetes is a long-term health condition that affects your body’s ability to turn food into energy. There are two types of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which the pancreas stops producing insulin. Type 2 diabetes occurs when your body has insulin resistance, which results in your pancreas producing extra insulin; however, over time it is unable to keep up. Both type 1 and type 2 diabetes can cause too much sugar in the bloodstream. Many of the typical early signs of diabetes are easy to ignore, and one in five people with diabetes don’t know they have it. That’s why you should keep a close eye out for the following early signs of diabetes.

1. Excessive Thirst

young woman drinking water from glass

One of the most common early signs of diabetes is dry mouth and excessive thirst. It’s easy to overlook this symptom by justifying that it’s hot outside or you haven’t been drinking enough water. While it’s normal to be thirsty in these cases, constant thirst may be a sign that your body is not producing enough insulin.

2. Frequent Urination

Another common early sign of diabetes is frequent urination. When your blood has too much sugar in it, your kidneys have to work harder to get rid of it. This causes them to produce more urine to remove the extra sugar from your body. That means you may need to use the restroom a lot more than usual. This is often one of the first key indicators of diabetes.

3. Dry Skin

legs with dry skin

In individuals with diabetes, it can be difficult for the body to balance skin moisture. That’s why one of the early signs of diabetes is noticing dry skin. If your skin is dried out, especially on your feet, you may need to keep an eye out for other symptoms of diabetes.

4. Slow-Healing Wounds

The body’s ability to heal wounds can be affected by the higher blood sugar content in a person with diabetes. You may notice that a cut, scrape, or blister is taking longer to health than it normally should. This can be especially dangerous because diabetes can cause nerve damage, which means you may not be able to feel a wound. Because it’s more difficult to know when you have a wound, you’re more likely to develop a serious infection.

5. Sudden Weight Loss

woman's foot stepping on scale

Sudden changes in weight often mean something isn’t quite right in the body. If you notice you are suddenly losing weight without trying, you may be experiencing one of the early signs of diabetes. It could mean nothing, but it could be an indication of diabetes, especially if you are experiencing any of the other early signs.

6. Blurry Vision

Changes in vision are common early signs of diabetes. You may notice that your vision is getting blurry, or you may see dark spots. An eye exam could let you know that it’s not an eye problem at all but rather an indication of diabetes. If untreated, diabetes can even cause permanent vision loss.

Early Signs Specific to Type 1 Diabetes

man holding stomach in pain

The two types of diabetes share many of the same early symptoms, but type 1 diabetes also has its own unique signs to watch out for. In addition to the above early signs of diabetes, individuals with type 1 diabetes may experience stomach pains, nausea, or vomiting. Symptoms of type 1 diabetes can develop in just a few weeks or months, and diagnosis can occur at any age.

Type 2 Diabetes Risk Factors

Symptoms of type 2 diabetes may take several years to develop, and some individuals may not notice any symptoms at all. Because symptoms can take longer to appear and are harder to spot, you should know the risk factors for type 2 diabetes and visit your doctor if you have any of them. Risk factors include being overweight, age of 45 years or older, having a close relative with type 2 diabetes, being physically active less than 3 times a week, having non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, or having ever had gestational diabetes.

Diabetic Care at Village Discount Drugs

Here at Village Discount Drugs, we are dedicated to helping you find solutions for your diabetic needs. We want to help make living with diabetes easier and more comfortable by not only helping you with all your medications but also providing further resources and education. If you have any questions about diabetic care or medications, please reach out to our expert pharmacy team today!

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