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Most Seniors Don’t Know About These 10 Strange Diabetes Symptoms

For many people, the first signs of diabetes aren’t always noticeable because they may be unusual. In fact, by the time you get to a doctor, the condition may have been there for some time.

You’ll be surprised to learn that strange diabetes symptoms are actually pretty common, and the only way to be able to recognize them is to know what they are and how they manifest.

Ignoring these red flags may lead to the development of several diabetes-related complications that may not be reversible. Therefore, it’s safe to say that information is power. Knowing those strange diabetes symptoms can help you act faster and seek medical assistance.

Even minor elevations in blood sugar can end up damaging your eyes, nerves, and kidneys. In the early stages of prediabetes, it’s possible to prevent the condition from progressing. However, if the blood sugar levels aren’t within healthy ranges but remain persistently high for long periods, the negative effects can be permanent.

Since diabetes is very prevalent in the US, experts recommend people between the ages of 40 and 70 get screened for type 2 diabetes. The testing should be done once every three years. For those with risk factors for diabetes, the screening should start at an earlier age and be done more frequently.

Being aware of diabetes warning signs can increase your chances of making an early diagnosis of the condition. The earlier diabetes is treated, the better the health outcomes. If you’re experiencing any of these strange diabetes symptoms, it’s highly recommended that you see a doctor as soon as possible.

Without further ado, here are 10 strange diabetes symptoms that most people tend to overlook!

strange diabetes symptoms
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1. Going to the bathroom more frequently

One of the earliest strange diabetes symptoms is frequent visits to the bathroom, especially during the night. This is often an indication that the sugar levels in your blood are high. You may notice that trips to the bathroom become more frequent after you eat sweetened foods and drink sodas.

It’s possible that your life partner may remark that you’re getting up too frequently at night to go to the bathroom. The reason you may experience this is because the high levels of sugar in your blood act as a water pill.

Keep in mind that drinking a lot of water in the evening can also make you urinate often. If you’re using the bathroom more than two times overnight, try not having caffeinated beverages after 5 p.m. and not drinking after 7 p.m. If you’re still urinating multiple times at night, that may be an indicator that something else is going on.

2. Drinking a lot of fluids

Feeling very thirsty is also among the strange diabetes symptoms. It goes hand in hand with constant urination; since you use the bathroom often, you’ll also develop a dry mouth and lips, feel constantly thirsty, and drink a lot of fluids.

Friends and family may start to notice that you seem to be drinking lots of fluids. If you’re drinking more than a gallon per day and feel like water doesn’t quench your thirst, this could indicate high blood sugar.

While feeling thirsty can usually mean you’re not hydrated enough, it’s also a sign that makes the list of strange diabetes symptoms.

3. Chronic yeast infections

High blood sugar from diabetes also affects the immune system, making it difficult for your body to fight off infections. In other words, infections are also on the list of strange diabetes symptoms.

According to experts, chronic vaginal yeast infections are pretty common in women with untreated diabetes due to the extra sugar in their blood that encourages yeast to grow. Other types of recurrent infections that doctors include in the strange diabetes symptoms category are urinary tract, bladder, and skin infections.

Primary care doctors don’t always see a connection between diabetes and chronic infections. If you’re dealing with frequent infections, it’s recommended that you be screened.

3. Losing weight

Losing weight is usually a good thing, and most people wouldn’t include it in the list of strange diabetes symptoms. However, if you haven’t made any changes to your fitness routine or diet and still lost a significant amount of weight, diabetes could be the culprit.

In type 1 diabetes, the lack of insulin will stop glucose from being used as fuel, so the body will use protein and fat stores for energy. Consequently, you may lose weight without trying. When it comes to type 2 diabetes, the effect may be the opposite. The lack of insulin doesn’t allow the body to use glucose, which causes hunger pangs.

4. Blurry vision

If you feel like you need frequent updates to your eye prescription, you may want to keep reading our article about strange diabetes symptoms. When blood sugar levels are high, that can lead to distortion of the light waves in the eye, causing blurry vision.

If you’re experiencing blurry, unclear, or unfocused vision, you should get tested for diabetes. While most people think they need to change their glasses when this happens, they don’t actually know that diabetes could also be the culprit.

If left untreated, diabetes can damage blood vessels located in the back of the eye, eventually causing glaucoma, cataracts, and even blindness.

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5. Exhaustion

When the level of glucose in the blood is high, many people complain of feeling exhausted. This happens because sugar can’t get into the cells to energize them, so the kidneys have to put extra effort into removing the sugar from your system. This can leave you feeling fatigued and weak.

The exhaustion can be moderate to severe and can even be disabling. It’s important to know that this sign also appears on the list of strange diabetes symptoms. Other reasons for exhaustion can include dehydration, frequent trips to the bathroom, lack of sleep due to frequent trips to the bathroom during the night, and damage to the kidneys.

Keep in mind that there are many reasons why you may be feeling exhausted all the time. However, if you notice that you experience exhaustion along with other strange diabetes symptoms, you should get tested.

6. Dry and itchy skin

Because of the potential dehydration caused by frequent urination, your skin will take a hit, feeling itchy and becoming dry. You may also be constantly scratching your skin and find that relief is often provided when you hydrate yourself.

Another signal that may indicate you have early diabetes is the development of skin tags, which are fleshy growths often found on the eyelids, neck, armpits, and groin.

If you still notice these changes in your skin even after increasing your water intake, you should talk to a doctor.

7. Skin discoloration

Some people with high blood sugar levels may notice that certain skin spots have a different color. This condition is called skin discoloration, and the medical term for it is acanthosis nigricans. It often describes the skin as having a velvety purple-blue rash that’s common on the armpits as well as in the folds of the skin like the groin and thigh areas and below the breast.

8. Poor healing

If you get a scrape or cut that seems to take forever to heal, you may be dealing with an early sign of diabetes. The reason poor healing makes the list of strange diabetes symptoms is that the extra blood sugar levels slow wound healing. Doctors point out that this leaves you vulnerable to infection.

This is why surgeons usually require patients to get tested for diabetes before they have surgery. In fact, doctors say it’s not uncommon for an elderly person who needs knee surgery to find out they have diabetes through pre-op screening.

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9. Constipation or nausea

Next on our list of strange diabetes symptoms are constipation and nausea. High blood sugar can slow down the digestive process, making you feel constipated, nauseated, or sick to your stomach.

Doctors point out that most patients learn about their diabetes diagnosis when they seek medical help because of the stomach flu. For this very reason, it’s important to know that a typical gastrointestinal condition generally lasts no more than three days.

If you’re experiencing constipation, nausea, or vomiting that seems to linger, something else is probably causing the problem, and a diabetes screen should be part of your doctor’s workup.

10. Mood changes

If you notice you’re more irritable, or your family and friends complain about your mood swings, than can be another strange sign of diabetes. The condition is known to cause fatigue, which can increase moodiness.

According to experts, high glucose levels affect the brain; therefore, someone with undiagnosed diabetes can find it hard to control their emotions. The good thing is that once the patient gets treatment and glucose levels are within healthy ranges, these strange diabetes symptoms improve.

Diabetes may sound scary at first, but there are millions of people living with it. It’s very important to follow a healthy and diabetes-friendly diet, and if you’re looking for some meal inspiration, this book from Amazon may be exactly what you need.

You may also want to read 9 Surprising Facts About Cholesterol Doctors Don’t Tell You.

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