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How to Know If You Have Diabetes

There are two types of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is usually diagnosed in childhood and is often referred to as juvenile diabetes [source:]. This type of diabetes occurs when the body doesn't produce insulin. In contrast to this, type 2 diabetes is usually diagnosed in adults, and occurs when the body either doesn't use the insulin produced or simply doesn't produce insulin. Both types of diabetes interfere with your body's ability to absorb sugar from your bloodstream, which can cause serious health problems, so it's worth knowing the symptoms. If you think you have any of the symptoms listed below, see your doctor as soon as possible [source:].

Both type 1 and type 2 diabetes have the following symptoms:

  • Extreme thirst or blurred vision, a result of your body taking fluid from all your tissues, including the lenses of your eyes, as your blood sugar rises [source:]
  • Frequent urination, a result of drinking more than usual in an attempt to quench your thirst [source:]
  • Recurrent skin, gum, bladder or vaginal yeast infections, resulting from the extra sugar in your blood interfering with your body's ability to fight infection [source:]
  • Extreme tiredness, feeling hungry even after you've eaten or weight loss without dieting, resulting from your body not getting the energy it needs from the food you're eating [source:]
  • Sores or bruises that heal slowly, a result of the extra sugar in your blood interfering with your body's ability to heal wounds [source: Gallagher]
  • Dry, itchy skin caused by a number of bacterial or fungal infections that are more common or unique in people with diabetes [source:]
  • Tingling or numbness in the hands or feet, resulting from poor circulation [source:]

Anyone who has these symptoms should visit a doctor for accurate diagnosis and treatment. Diabetes is not a disease that is easily diagnosed at home or treated without the advice or care of a qualified physician.