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How to recognise diabetes

With more than 3.5 million people in the UK diagnosed with it, Diabetes is a huge problem in society these days. There are a further estimated 540.000 people who are diabetic but do not know it, according to Diabetes UK.

There are two types of Diabetes namely Type 1 and Type 2

Type 1

This is where the body's immune system attacks and then destroys cells that produce insulin.

Type 2

Here the body does not produce enough insulin. It can also be that the body's cells don’t react to insulin. 

The most common type of Diabetes in the UK is Type 2 with around 90% of all adults in the UK with Diabetes suffering from this type, according to the NHS.

Symptoms of diabetes are:

  • Needing to urinate a lot, particularly at night
  • Feeling very thirsty
  • Feeling more tired than usual
  • Losing weight without being on a diet
  • Thrush or genital itching
  • Wounds and cuts take longer to heal
  • Eyesight is blurry
  • Increased hunger feelings

It is important to note that while these are the most common symptoms, every individual is different and one person’s symptoms may not match the list above. However, the most common sign to look out for is increased thirst followed by frequent urination, tiredness and weight loss.

When should you see your doctor?

You should contact your doctor if you show any signs of Diabetes, or you believe that you or any other person is at high risk of developing it.

Who can be at risk?

Known factors for Diabetes are ethnicity, genetics and even lifestyle choices. 

Final thoughts

Because the symptoms appear so quickly, it is hard to ignore the signs for Type 1 Diabetes. Leaving it untreated can lead to further complications such as diabetic ketoacidosis which can sometimes be fatal.

Leaving Type 2 Diabetes untreated is often easier because it develops slowly and in the early stages it can be difficult to spot. However, untreated, it can cause damage to major organs such as heart, eyes, kidneys, blood vessels and nerves.

If you even suspect that you or a loved one is showing signs of Diabetes it is always best to see your doctor as soon as possible.

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