The early warning
signs of diabetes can be hard to spot at first, and people sometimes mistake
them for stress or fatigue. More than 29
million Americans have diabetes -- 1 out of 10 U.S. adults -- and according to
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than a quarter of them are
undiagnosed. Millions of others are considered at high risk for developing
Read on to
learn more about what “silent” symptoms to look for that may actually point to
diabetes. Talk to your
doctor if you have any of these warning signs so you can discuss whether you should
be screened for diabetes.
Warning sign: You’re Taking More
When you have
diabetes, your body becomes less efficient at breaking food down into sugar, so
you have more sugar sitting in your bloodstream. One red flag is whether the need to urinate
keeps you up at night. Once or twice might be normal, but if it's affecting
your ability to sleep, that could be a diabetes symptom to pay attention to.
Warning Sign: You’re Thirstier Than
Urinating a lot
will also make you feel thirsty. One mistake people with diabetes make is they use
drinks like juices, soda, or chocolate milk to quench their thirst. These
sugary beverages then pack the bloodstream with excess sugar, which can make
the problem worse.
Warning Sign: You’ve Lost a Little
that being overweight is a risk factor for diabetes, it sounds counterintuitive
that losing weight could be a silent diabetes symptom. But much of this weight
loss is actually water weight from frequent urination.
Warning Sign: You Feel Shaky and Hungry
When you have
high blood sugar, your body has a trouble regulating glucose, which can lead to
hunger and shakiness. This may also cause carbohydrate or sugar cravings, which
can worsen the problem.
Warning Sign: You’re Tired All The Time
When your blood
sugar is up and down, you don't feel well. You may also become short-tempered,
lose the desire to go out, and frequently want to sleep. In fact, many diabetes
patients think they have depression when in fact they show signs of improvement
after their blood sugar stabilizes.
Warning Sign: Your Vision Seems Blurry
In the early
stages of diabetes, the eye lens stops focusing well because glucose builds up
in the eye, temporarily changing its shape. This can usually be corrected once
blood sugars are stabilized.
Warning Sign: Your Feet Tingle
levels can cause complications well before you realize you have diabetes. One
of these is mild nerve damage, which can cause numbness in your feet, known as