Diabetes: symptoms and safety precautions

By Matthias Samuel

Diabetes is a disease in which your blood glucose, or blood sugar, levels are too high. It is basically a disorder of metabolism, the way our bodies use digested food for growth and energy. There are two types of diabetes, type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes. Unfortunately, there is no cure for diabetes. The people who have diabetes have to manage their disease to stay healthy.

With the first type of diabetes, your body does not make insulin while with second type diabetes, the more common type, your body does not make or use insulin well. Without enough insulin, the glucose stays in your blood.

Symptoms of diabetes

  • Urinating often
  • Feeling very thirsty
  • Feeling very hungry—even though you are eating
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Blurry vision
  • Cuts/bruises that are slow to heal
  • Weight loss—even though you are eating more (in case of type 1)
  • Tingling, pain, or numbness in the hands/feet (in case of type 2)

Safety precautions

Following are ways to avoid diabetes:

  • Don’t smoke (Smoking increases your risk of type 2)
  • Keep your blood pressure and chole sterol under control (Like diabetes, high blood pressure can damage your blood vessels)
  • Schedule regular physicals and eye exam (Schedule two to four diabetes checkups a year, in addition to your yearly physical and routine eye exams.)
  • Keep your vaccines up to date (Diabetes makes it more likely you’ll get certain illnesses. Routine vaccines can help prevent them)
  • Take care of your teeth (Diabetes may leave you prone to gum infections. Brush your teeth at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste)
  • Pay attention to your feet (High blood sugar can reduce blood flow and damage the nerves in your feet)
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Matthias Samuel is a student of history in Quaid-i-Azam University (QAU) Islamabad, and occasionally writes blogs and articles.