It is estimated that millions of individuals all over the world have diabetes, but not all are aware that they have the condition. A major factor is the absence of the symptoms. Some will not take any action until the symptoms are evident or already in an advanced stage. Take note that this is a hallmark of both prediabetes and the early stages of type 2 diabetes.
What are the signs and symptoms of diabetes?
Remember that both type 1 and type 2 diabetes share similar symptoms such as frequent urination, unquenchable thirst, fatigue, unexpected weight loss, extreme hunger and blurred vision. Another symptom that typically develops among those with type 2 diabetes includes high occurrence of infections as well as wounds or bruises that heal at a slower rate than normal. The start of the symptoms tends to occur in a gradual manner for those with type 2 diabetes than those with type 1 diabetes.
The gradual nature of prediabetes which is often a predisposing factor for type 2 diabetes can conceal the actual diabetic symptoms and prevent early diagnosis of the condition. As a consequence, it is vital for individuals who have some diabetes risk factors to be aware of the symptoms. The manifestation of any of these symptoms is enough reason to consult a doctor for proper assessment of the condition and diagnosis.
Risk factors for diabetes
The type 2 diabetes has a hereditary component. If an individual has a family member with the condition, he/she is at increased risk for developing it as well. Other risk factors include smoking, high blood pressure or being overweight or inactive.
Other risk factors include ethnicity, age, history of gestational diabetes and prediabetes. Take note that being overweight is one of the striking features of diabetes. Many individuals who are overweight or obese are more likely to develop diabetes. Remember that losing weight can help delay or even prevent diabetic complications as well as make glucose a lot easier to manage type 2 diabetes.
When to take action
Once an individual has any of the risk factors for diabetes, prediabetes testing is vital. The main tests include fasting plasma glucose test and oral glucose tolerance test. Those who have risk factors must be screened for diabetes as often as every two years. This will ensure that the condition is spotted on early so that appropriate changes can be made on the diet and lifestyle. In addition, certain medications can be prescribed to manage the condition.
A vital point to bear in mind for an individual with diabetes is to make concrete decisions on exercise and diet with the help of a doctor. Individuals who have diabetes must be proactive and ask the doctor regarding the blood sugar level as well as the risk factors linked with diabetes.