What are the symptoms of diabetes?

The main diabetes symptoms across the two main types of diabetes are an increased need to urinate (known as polyuria), severe thirst (polydipsia) and constant fatigue.

25 January 2016

Symptoms common to both type 1 and type 2 diabetes are:

  • Increased or unusual thirst that also results in a need to urinate;
  • Getting up at night to urinate;
  • Unusual weight loss, even though you are eating well;
  • Blurred vision;
  • Cuts or bruises that heal slowly, boils and itches;
  • Frequent or recurring fungal infections.

Those with type 2 diabetes may also experience tingling, pain, or numbness in the hands or feet, however, they frequently do not show any symptoms. This is also the case with pregnant women who have gestational diabetes, making it important to ensure you stay up-to-date with health check-ups.

Symptoms of type 1 include:

  1. Being hungry all the time: It’s unusual not to feel satiated after a decent meal.
  2. Weight loss in spite of a healthy appetite: This will indicate the body’s inability to convert glucose into energy.
  3. Always being thirsty and needing to urinate often: Requiring constant liquid intake can indicate that kidney function is under pressure to clear away excess glucose.
  4. Always feeling tired: After a good night’s rest, you should typically be full of energy, but those with type 1 diabetes will constantly feel low on energy.
  5. Sudden mood swings and inability to concentrate: Irritability or moodiness can also indicate erratic blood sugar levels.
  6. Suffering from blurry vision: This may be another indication that your body is not able to process blood sugar properly, leading to your being hypoglycaemic.
  7. Yeast infections that don’t clear: Fluctuating blood sugar levels may affect the body’s ability to deal with infections efficiently.
  8. Impaired level of consciousness: impending ketoacidotic coma. In severe cases of type 1 diabetes, ketoacidosis may occur in which your body is almost completely without insulin. This can happen even if you’ve administered your normal dose of insulin, especially if your body is under additional stress, for example, if you have the flu. Ketoacidosis is a serious condition that requires immediate medical attention. Its symptoms include: abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, feeling weak and tired, chest pain and struggling to breathe, breath that smells like nail polish remover or fruit, loss of consciousness and coma.
Read More: Diabetes Super Section