Diagnosing Symptoms of Diabetes: Information and Facts

Learn Signs of Diabetes, What Tests Are Performed, and When to See a Doctor

The signs of diabetes vary and are not always indicative of a positive diabetes diagnosis.  There is a lot of information available and we have put together some valuable tips to help in diagnosing this disease and the symptoms of the two types.  Remember, as with all potential medical conditions, the best resource is your medical practitioner. The following are some diabetes facts and warning signs.

There are two main types of diabetes:

  • Type 1: This is when your body makes little or no insulin.
  • Type 2: This is when your body produces insulin but your cells do not use it well.

The symptoms of diabetes you may experience which may lead to a diagnosis of Type 1 diabetes include the following:

  • Frequent urination
  • Increased thirst
  • Extreme hunger pains
  • Weight loss
  • Blurred vision
  • Irritability
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

The symptoms you may experience which may lead to a diagnosis of Type 2 Diabetes include the following:

  • Weight gain
  • Pain, cramping or numbness in the legs or feet
  • Drowsiness
  • Skin infections
  • Sores
  • Thirst

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should make an appointment to be tested for diabetes. People with Type 1 diabetes will generally know they have something wrong. Individuals with Type 2 diabetes may not discover they have diabetes until they are seen by a doctor for another issue, such as heart disease, kidney problems, nerve problems or impotence. When you visit your doctor, he will perform tests to determine if your symptoms are indeed pointing to a diabetes diagnosis.

Tests that a doctor will perform to determine if you have diabetes include the Fasting Blood Glucose Level Test and The Oral Glucose Tolerance Test.

  1. The Fasting Blood Glucose Level Test is performed by drawing blood after you have been on an overnight fast. This will enable the doctor to see what your blood glucose level is when you have not eaten. An individual who does not have diabetes will have a blood glucose level in the range of 70-110 mg/dl. An individual with diabetes will have a fasting blood glucose level above 126 mg/dl.
  2. The Oral Glucose Tolerance Test is performed either in a lab or at a doctor's office. To get accurate results you should not have eaten for at least 10 hours. You will have your blood glucose level checked prior to the test. After your blood glucose level has been checked, you will be given a drink called "glucola" that has a very high amount of sugar content. You will then have your blood sugar levels tested at 30 minutes intervals for up to three hours. Numerous blood glucose level testing is done to monitor how long it takes your body to regulate the glucola. If you have an elevated reading of 200+ mg/dl after two hours, you probably will be diagnosed with diabetes.

The most important thing you can keep in mind if you are diagnosed with diabetes is that it is not your fault. The tendency to develop this disease is generally inherited. It does not always come from being overweight and it is not caused by eating too much sugar.


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