Diabetes mellitus or simply diabetes is a type of non-communicable disease and usually, the onset of this disease is insidious. It happens when the body is unable to lower down the level of glucose in the blood either due to insulin resistance or the body is unable to produce insulin. People often think they do not have diabetes until they experience symptoms of it or until they are presented to the hospital for complications of diabetes for the first time due to being undiagnosed before.
If you have this risk factors, you might be at risk of developing diabetes:
- Family history with diabetes mellitus
- Overweight or obesity
- Age: Diabetes type 1 could occur at any time but commonly seen in children meanwhile type 2 can is commonly seen in elderlies
- Had gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy) and delivered a baby weighs more than 4kg
- Having a sedentary lifestyle; physically inactive and taking unbalanced meal
If you have the risk factors mentioned above, you might want to consider yourself doing a medical checkup. It is advisable for a person to do his or her medical check up yearly because we will never know we might have developed diabetes as well as other non-communicable diseases such as hypertension and high cholesterol over the time.
By having the risk factors, you need to be aware of the symptoms of diabetes. The symptoms are often overlooked and mistaken for other causes especially when the medical history is not being taken properly. The symptoms may be subtle in the beginning and it gets worse along with time if the blood sugar is not controlled. Here are 6 symptoms of diabetes that is commonly complained by the patients that are presented to the clinic:
Passing urine more often and always thirsty. This is due to the high amount of sugar inside the blood and the kidney is unable to reabsorb the glucose inside the body. This causes the body to produce more urine and glucose can be presented in the urine. This causes glucosuria. Due to the body producing more urine compared to the normal individual, you pass more urine more often and this can lead to dehydration and this will lead to the feeling of thirst.
Hungry and tired. Glucose is important as it is the main source of energy in humans. Glucose uptake can be impaired when the cells that produce insulin are destroyed or the body cells resist the insulin (insulin resistance). When this happens, glucose cannot get into the cells and this results in low energy (tiredness) and hunger as well.
Unexplained weight loss. Although weight loss is more common in type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes patients can experience sudden and unexplained weight loss as well. Since your body is unable to produce insulin or the cell resists the insulin, the body has to generate energy from other sources such as fat and muscle.
Prone to having infection. Most bacteria or yeast requires glucose to grow. When the glucose is high in the blood, you are more likely to get infected. Both men and women pose the risk of having infection. This can get worse when you have a cut or wound because blood is a good medium for bacteria to grow and this causes poor healing of the wound and the wound could get infected.