What are the early symptoms of diabetes if you’re a woman? Are you at risk for diabetes? Diabetes is one of the most common metabolic disorders in women. It is possible for them to experience this condition differently. That’s why it is essential to identify the particular signs of diabetes in women, such as increased thirst, increased hunger, frequent urination, fatigue, and blurred vision, as soon as possible to treat them better.
Diabetes occurs when the body cannot produce or process insulin. This hormone is responsible for converting blood sugar into energy. A high blood sugar level can lead to organ failure. This disease can affect anyone. Diabetic women experience slightly different symptoms than diabetic men because of their hormones and the way inflammation manifests itself.
In the early stages of diabetes, blood glucose levels are higher than usual. Often, you don’t notice the warning signs because they are so mild. It’s especially true for people with type 2 diabetes. Some people don’t discover they have the disease until they suffer long-term damage.
In this article, we’ll briefly know about the signs of diabetes in women so that you all learn about them and be careful.
What is Diabetes?
The term diabetes refers to a group of metabolic diseases that affect a person’s blood sugar level because the body either doesn’t produce insulin or can’t use it even when it’s produced. Insulin helps your body convert carbohydrates into energy. Some signs of diabetes in women include increased thirst, frequent urination, blurred vision, and fatigue.
Generally, there are three types:
- Type 1 diabetes: This type of diabetes is caused by an autoimmune disorder that prevents the body from producing insulin.
- Type 2 diabetes: This is the most common type of diabetes, related to ineffective use of insulin by the body.
- Gestational diabetes: It is a type of diabetes that occurs during pregnancy. It is a condition in which the body is unable to produce enough insulin to properly regulate blood sugar levels. This can lead to high blood sugar levels, which can be harmful to both the mother and the baby.
The disease affects people of all ages, sexes, and genders, but often affects women more severely than men.
Signs of Diabetes in Women
The symptoms of diabetes may be similar for women and men. However, women experience some symptoms differently than men. By understanding these symptoms, you may be able to identify diabetes and receive treatment as soon as possible. Here are some signs of diabetes that women need to look out for:
Hunger and Fatigue
Your cells use glucose for energy when you eat food. To take in glucose, your cells require insulin. Glucose can’t get into your cells if your body doesn’t produce enough insulin or if your cells resist the insulin your body makes. This can make you feel hungrier and more tired than normal.
Women with diabetes are more likely to develop vaginal thrush and yeast infections. That’s because their high blood sugar levels provide the optimal conditions for fungus to grow in the mouth and vagina. A yeast or fungal infection can cause intense itching, pain, vaginal discharge, and uncomfortable sex. Consult a doctor immediately if you have yeast or fungal infections.
Urinary Infections (UTI)
If you’re a woman and have a urinary tract infection (UTIs), get your blood sugar level checked immediately because UTIs are one of the signs of diabetes. Bacteria enter the urinary tract, causing UTIs. These infections may result in the following:
- Painful urination
- Burning sensation
- Bloody or cloudy urine
If these symptoms are not treated, there is a chance of kidney infection. UTIs are frequently experienced by diabetic women, primarily due to the immune system being weakened by hyperglycemia.
Sudden Weight Change
The loss or gain of weight without apparent reason is another symptom of diabetes. Food is not used efficiently by the body, resulting in sudden weight loss. Diabetic patients are at risk of weight gain due to excessive hunger.
When blood sugar levels in the body are too high, small blood vessels in the eyes might be damaged, resulting in blurred vision. Untreated injury to these blood vessels can develop and cause permanent eyesight loss. Women who do not treat their diabetes may experience frequent blurred vision.
Women suffering from diabetes experience attacks of crankiness, anxiety, and sometimes even depression.
Having to go to the bathroom frequently is caused by increased thirst caused by diabetes, requiring you to drink subsequent glasses of water. Maintain regular hygiene because frequent urination can be a breeding ground for bacteria that trigger UTIs.
Symptoms of Diabetes
Anyone with diabetes may have any of the following symptoms:
- Increased thirst and hunger
- Frequent urination
- Weight loss or weight gain without any reason
- Blurry vision
- Wounds that heal slowly
- Skin infections
- Acanthosis nigricans, or darker skin areas in the armpits, groin, and neck
- Reduced feeling in the hands or feet
Importance of Early Diagnosis
If you experience any of the above signs of diabetes, you should consult your doctor, especially if you have other medical issues. Controlling blood sugar levels and getting appropriate treatment can significantly improve a person’s health and quality of life and reduce complications.
High blood sugar levels can have severe and sometimes life-threatening effects, such as:
- Heart disease
- Nerve damage or neuropathy
- Foot problems
- Kidney disease, which may need dialysis for some people
- Loss of vision
- Sexual problems
- It’s essential to control blood sugar levels to prevent some of these issues. The more prolonged blood sugar levels remain uncontrolled, the higher the risk of other health problems.
Untreated diabetes can also cause hyperosmolar hyperglycemic syndrome (HHS), which leads to persistent and severe increases in blood sugar levels. An illness or infection usually triggers HHS, which can result in hospitalization. Older people are more likely to suffer from this sudden complication.
It is important for women to be aware of all the above-discussed signs in order to detect the condition early and seek appropriate treatment. Some common signs of diabetes in women include increased thirst, frequent urination, unexplained weight loss, and fatigue. By paying attention to these signs and seeking medical attention as needed, women can effectively manage their diabetes and maintain their overall health and well-being.