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Blacks and diabetes: Signs and symptoms

Increased thirst and frequent urination. When sugar builds up in the bloodstream, fluid is pulled from the tissues. So if you been going to the bathroom to urinate more often recently, then it may indicate that your insulin is ineffective, or not there at all, making your kidneys unable to filter the glucose back into the blood. The kidneys will take water from your blood in order to dilute the glucose — which in turn fills up your bladder. Moreover, if you are urinating more than usual, you will need to replace that lost liquid.

Numbness or tingling, especially in your feet and hands If there is too much sugar in your body your nerves could become damaged, as could the tiny blood vessels that feed those nerves. You may experience tingling or numbness in your hands and feet.

Blurred vision. If your blood sugar is too high, fluid may be pulled from the lenses of your eyes.  This affects your eyes’ ability to focus. With proper treatment this can be treated. There are severe cases where blindness or prolonged vision problems can occur.

Irritability or unusual behavior. People with undiagnosed type 1 diabetes may suddenly seem moody or irritable. Irritability can be due to your lack of energy.

Intense hunger as the insulin in your blood is not working properly and your cells are not getting  energy, your body may react by trying to find more energy — food. You will become hungry. Without enough insulin to move sugar into your cells, your muscles and organs become energy depleted. This is what triggers intense hunger.

Weight gain and/or Unusual weight loss this might be the result of the above symptom (intense hunger). However, unusual weight loss, a symptom more common among people with Diabetes Type 1, occurs when your body is not making insulin and needs another energy source (the cells aren’t getting glucose). Muscle tissue and fat will be broken down for energy. As type 1 is of a more sudden onset and type 2 is much more gradual, weight loss is more noticeable with type 1.

These are not the only signs of diabetes. Others include: cuts and bruises don’t heal properly or quickly, more yeast infections in women, itchy skin, inflamed or bleeding gums and sexual dysfunction among men over the age of 50.

If you may have some of the above symptoms, you are recommended to talk to your doctor or a qualified health professional.

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