Signs You Could Be Diabetic

Signs You Could Be Diabetic

Diabetes is one of the most common chronic illnesses in the US today. It can lead to heart disease, to chronic pain and numbness in the extremities, loss of eyesight and even amputation of toes and feet if not kept under careful control. Early symptoms are often overlooked. Being familiar with the signs may help you catch diabetes early and prevent long term cardiovascular damage.

Type I Diabetes

Type I diabetes usually comes on before the patient is an adult. In Type I diabetes, the patient’s pancreas simply stops producing insulin. It can be a result of heredity or of an infection or injury to the pancreas. Typically symptoms are far more severe and develop more quickly than in patients with Type II diabetes. Symptoms when diabetic may include rapid weight loss, lethargy, dehydration and a significant increase in urination.

Type II Diabetes

Type II diabetes is far more common than Type I in adults. It may be caused by heredity, by the strain excess weight puts on the body, or by poor eating habits. Type II diabetes symptoms may come on more slowly and be less noticeable at first than the symptoms of Type I. They may include:

  • Frequent urination
  • Chronic, insatiable hunger that returns even after eating
  • Insatiable thirst
  • Dry, itchy, flaky skin due to dehydration
  • Blurring vision
  • Sudden weight loss unrelated to diet or exercise
  • Unexplained fatigue and lethargy
  • Slow healing of cuts or bruises
  • Gum disease

Factors that Contribute to Diabetes

Certain factors can influence your chances of becoming diabetic. While Type II diabetes is often connected with being overweight, genetics play a large part as well. If a parent or sibling is diabetic, it may mean you are at a greater risk. Other factors include ethnic background- Hispanics and Latino Americans, African Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders and Alaskan Natives are all ethnic groups that are prone to diabetes.

Gestational diabetes (developing diabetes while pregnant) may indicate you’re at higher risk for developing Type II diabetes later on. Exercising less than 3 times a week may increase your risk factor, so be sure to get plenty of exercise

If you suspect you or a loved one is diabetic, make an appointment right away for testing. Treatments and changes in lifestyle and diet can not only prevent the damage from the disease, in some cases, Type II can even be reversed. Call Dr. Ciuffo today for your appointment, and ask your doctor about ways you can mitigate your risk factors for diabetes.

A picture of Giovanni B. Ciuffo, MD wearing his Mercy One doctor attire.

About the Author

Giovanni B. Ciuffo, MD Director is an expert in Minimally Invasive Heart Surgery and Bloodless Heart Surgery is the outcome of his commitment to the development and improvement of both of these techniques. He runs a Cardiothoracic Surgery practice and manages Minimally Invasive and Bloodless Heart Surgery Program where he cares for patients from all over the country and locally. Click here to learn more about Dr. Ciuffo.

Board Certified:
American Board of Surgery
American Board of Thoracic Surgery