Signs and Symptoms of Diabetes

Updated at: Feb 24, 2014
Signs and Symptoms of Diabetes

Many of the diabetics do not even know that they have the condition. A disorder characterised by elevated blood glucose, has many symptoms that can be easily confused with other conditions. The symptoms of diabetes seem harmless initially, but an

Gunjan Rastogi
DiabetesWritten by: Gunjan RastogiPublished at: Sep 20, 2012

Many people with type 2 diabetes may have the disease for years and not even know about it.  The main reason for being unaware about the disease is that the symptoms appear benign and harmless if observed in isolation.

Signs and Symptoms of Diabetes

Diabetes is an endocrine disorder that occurs when one’s body is not able to convert glucose into energy due to a lack of insulin. As a result of the buildup of sugar in the blood, you may have several signs and symptoms.


The common signs and symptoms of high diabetes are: 


Increased Thirst and Frequent Urination

Do you feel that you spend most of the day going to the toilet? Are you always thirsty? These could be symptoms of diabetes. Increase in the blood sugar level causes fluids to move out your cells. This makes you feel thirsty you drink more water which in turn leads to frequent urination. The high blood glucose levels cause loss of glucose in urine. Glucose will take water from your blood and this causes your bladder to fill up and finally results in frequent urination.


Increased Hunger

Have you started eating more than usual and you feel hungry often? People with diabetes feel hungry as their body cannot use the glucose in the blood (as the insulin in the body is not working well). So the cells of the body are depleted of energy and you feel hungry more frequently.


Weight Gain

People with diabetes often gain weight due to increased hunger and frequent eating.


Unusual Weight Loss

This is more common in people with type 1 diabetes as the inability of the body to use glucose leads to tissue breakdown (fat and muscle break down). This causes loss of weight.



Increased Fatigue

Even though there is abundant glucose in the blood, the cells starve (as your body cannot use the glucose in the blood due to lack of insulin) and don’t get their essential energy. So you feel tired and fatigued.


Blurred Vision

Elevated glucose levels in the blood leads to loss of fluid from the lenses of your eyes. This can affect your ability to focus and see clearly. If diabetes remains untreated or uncontrolled, blindness or prolonged vision problems can occur.


Slow-healing Sores or Frequent Infections

If your cuts and bruises take a much longer time than usual to heal then get your blood sugar tested. It can be because of diabetes. Elevated blood sugar (glucose) impairs the ability of your body to heal and can lead to frequent infections (yeast and candida). The incidence of bladder and vaginal infections in women increases considerably.
Itchy skin The skin of people with diabetes can become dry and itchy.


Other Symptoms

Sexual dysfunction among men Men over 50 years of age can experience frequent or constant sexual dysfunction (erectile dysfunction). Numbness or tingling of feet and hands This caused due to damage to the nerves due to high blood sugar. A diabetic person with severe hyperglycaemia or severely elevated glucose levels for a long time (several hours or days) can have other symptoms.

  • Dehydration.
  • Difficulty in breathing.
  • Giddiness on standing.
  • Weight loss.
  • Drowsiness, stupor and confusion.
  • Loss of consciousness or coma.


If you have symptoms suggestive of elevated glucose levels, get your blood sugar levels tested. Even though the signs and symptoms of diabetes seem harmless initially, an early diagnosis of diabetes improves the overall prognosis and decreases the chances of serious complications due to diabetes.



Read more articles on Diabetes Symptoms.



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