Mahaska Health Partnership Shares Symptoms of Diabetes
MAHASKA COUNTY – Are you having trouble hearing or seeing, but think it just has to do with getting older? Some of the symptoms associated with diabetes are often dismissed as normal signs of aging and not taken seriously. Mahaska Health Partnership encourages an awareness of diabetes symptoms to aid in early diagnosis and treatment.
According to Centers for Disease Control, diabetes is a disease that affects over 25 million Americans. Your risk for developing type 2 diabetes starts to increase with age, especially if you are overweight. “Family history, high blood pressure and being African American, Latino, American Indian or Asian can also put you at high risk,” MHP Certified Diabetes Educator Sharon Ferguson explained. “It’s important to have regular check-ups to ensure you are on a healthy track as you age.”
According to Ferguson, one of the most common signs of diabetes that gets mistaken for normal aging is difficulty seeing or hearing. “Hearing loss is much more common in people with diabetes,” Ferguson shared. “Blurred vision is also common, due to the buildup of glucose which can distort the shape of the lens in your eye.”
Ferguson also explained that constant hunger and thirst are common symptoms. “If you have the frequent urge to urinate but are also thirsty, that can be a sign that you have diabetes. Your body tries to get rid of the excess glucose by increasing your urination, which dehydrates you and increases thirst.”
Other symptoms Ferguson shared included increased fatigue and irritability. “Since your body is not converting glucose to energy, you will feel more tired and that can lead to feeling grouchy and on edge.”
Dry, itchy skin, dark patches around your neck, cuts and bruises that take a long time to heal and numbness or tingling in the hands and feet can be additional warning signs. Many of these symptoms are caused by blood vessels and nerves that are damaged by excessive amounts of glucose.
“If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, I highly encourage you to follow up with your primary care provider,” Ferguson said. “They can help determine your diagnoses and get you on the proper management track.”
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, consult your primary care provider. If you have diabetes and would like to learn more about effectively managing your disease, contact Sharon Ferguson at 641.672.3422.
Mahaska Health Partnership, located in Oskaloosa, is a non-profit health system accredited by the Joint Commission. It is guided by its mission to provide exceptional customer service and health improvement, linking the science of medicine with the humanity of compassionate care. For more information about how Mahaska Health Partnership is making healthcare personal, visit www.mahaskahealth.org.