Diabetes Types and Symptoms

What is diabetes?

Diabetes mellitus (DM), also known as, simply, diabetes, is, in fact, a group of diseases which affect the blood sugar levels in time. The main sign of this disorder is a particularly high blood sugar in individuals, in periods that are longer than a week.

There are plenty symptoms of increased or excessive blood in sugar, but one of the most common ones is this: frequent urination. Frequent urination also seems to come with an intense thirst, obviously. Also, there are patients reporting an increased hunger.

Diabetes has to be treated as soon as soon as it is found since it can lead to plenty of long-term complications. For instance, there are two types of complications that can occur.

The acute complications are ketoacidosis, coma, or even death. The chronic or long-term complications are heart problems, stroke, eye damage, foot ulcers and kidney failure. These complications are not to be taken lightly, and a ‘better safe than sorry’ mentality is recommended.

As soon as you notice one of the symptoms for diabetes, immediately see a doctor. Prevention is the best kind of medicine; and if you find out that you indeed have diabetes, there is plenty to do in early stages.

Diabetes Signs and symptoms

In order to be able to prevent this awful disease, one must be aware of the signs and symptoms of diabetes.

The classic and common symptoms are: weight loss, increased urination, increased thirst and hunger. These symptoms can slowly accumulate and degenerate throughout a period of one to 6-8 months in type 1 disorder. However, they develop more slowly in type 2 diabetes.

There are plenty of other symptoms that can mark the appearance of diabetes, although they are not necessarily a sign of early onset disorder. Diabetic dermadromes are an uncommon sign of early diabetes, but if it is left untreated, over time they might develop. They are skin rashes that occur and expand slowly.

Also, glucose absorption issues can modify the form of the eye lens and globe, which can, in turn, result in vision changes. Even though they occur naturally with old age, abrupt changes in vision could be a symptom of diabetes and needs to get checked out as soon as possible.

Diabetes emergency

There are also dangerous events when it comes to diabetes, also known as diabetes emergencies. Due to a low blood sugar that is common in both types of disorder, once can experience such crisis.

In fact, the hunger comes from a low blood sugar, but from other factors as well. Even though these emergencies are not that common and do not happen often, they can be dangerous. One needs to be cautious when it comes to such issues.

The effects can vary. Some people may feel uneasy, dizzy. They may be trembling and / or have an increased appetite. In mild and serious cases, confusions may also set in. Have you ever felt like fainting when you would stand up in the morning to brush your teeth?

These are exactly the same symptoms, even though they can be more or less harsh. You were feeling like fainting because of low blood pressure. Diabetics feel dizzy because of the same reason too.

Cases

However, in more serious cases, a diabetic could also get aggressive and confused. There a few cases of seizures and loss of consciousness, which is not something to be taken lightly. Due to these 2, there have been recorded deaths too.

Brain damage is also prevalent, especially if the patient remains unconscious for more than a few minutes and / or hits his head on something. If you feel like you are experiencing a diabetes emergency, you need to go see a doctor. If you see that somebody is experiencing this emergency, you need to have them sit down NOW.

Have them lay down and once the seizures set in, act accordingly. This means that you need to hold them tightly so they will not hurt themselves. Also, get some help if possible and pull their tongue out so they don’t bite it.

Milder cases of hypoglycemia may be mistaken with drunkenness. However, it is not the case. Especially if the patient is also experiencing rapid breathing, sweating and has a cold, pale skin.

Milder cases can be self-treated. This means that the diabetic must drink or eat (preferably drink) something high in sugar. However, more serious cases need to be treated with glucagon and / or glucose injections.

Type 1 diabetes

Type 1 diabet sufferers may also experience diabetic ketoacidosis, which is mainly characterized by abdominal pain and vomiting, as well as the smell of acetone in breath. Kussmaul breathing might also set in, which is deep breathing. These patients can also increasingly experience a loss of consciousness, feeling more and more like they are in a dream.

Dehydration is also something to be taken into consideration. A diabetic can easily experience kidney pain if he or she is dehydrated. Kidney failure sets in if the diabetic hasn’t been drinking any water in the last 48 hours, or if he is severely dehydrated.

Diabetes complications

Complications are not something one can avoid, but rather prevents in this kind of disease. Even though they set in after some time (10 to 20 years of disease), one can experience specific symptoms even before they have properly set in.

The most dangerous kind of complications is related to blood vessels. They may get damaged over time, which is why over more than ¾ of the deaths in diabetes are related to coronary diseases.

Due to the blood vessel damage, one can also experience nerve damage, as well as macrovascular issues such as strokes and eye damage. Chronic kidney disease also has a high chance of setting in.

Diabetic neuropathy (also known as damaged nerves) is among the most common complications of diabetes. The symptoms can include numbness in any body part, as well as pain or a lack of pain. The lack of pain can further on increase the chances of wounds. Skin wounds are the most common ones. However, there are reported cases of diabetics who have broken their bones or even torn their muscles. Having this disorder requires increased caution.

Diabetes-related foot issues are also something not to be taken lightly. In fact, most patients suffer foot atrophies, as well as general weakness. In more serious cases, their foot needs to be amputated.

Cognitive function also has a chance of being affected, even though we are only talking about correlation and this point. Insulin seems to help the patient regain his cognitive functions.

What are the causes of the disorder? First of all, the pancreas is not producing enough insulin. It’s either this or the cells are not actually properly responding to the insulin in the bloodstream.

How many types of diabetes are there?

There are 3 types of diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes is directly related to the pancreas. It results from the pancreas’ inability to produce enough insulin. This form of diabetes was also known as juvenile diabetes. However, we do not yet know the real cause(s) of type 1 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is initially characterized by insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is the condition in which the cells are not able to properly respond to insulin. As a result, there is a lack of insulin in the organism.

This form of diabetes was also previously known as ‘adult diabetes’. We speculate that the main causes for this type of disorder are a lack of exercise and too much body fat. There is a correlation between obese patients and patients with this disease.

Type 3 diabetes does not exist. However, there is a special type of disorder called gestational diabetes. It occurs in pregnant women. As a response to pregnancy, their body develops high blood sugars, which in time gives them diabetes. Women can prevent this type of diabetes by exercising, keeping a regular amount of body fat and not smoking.

Proper foot care is very important when it comes to diabetes. Proper care of blood pressure is also important in diabetic people.

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