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The first thing that springs to mind when you hear "diabetes" is undoubtedly high blood sugar levels. Blood sugar is an often-overlooked aspect of your overall health. It can lead to diabetes if the sugar gets out of balance in bodily functions. Diabetes is harmful to the human body. There are some significant signs and symptoms that you may experience if you get diabetes.
After a person eats or drinks, their body will start breaking down sugars from their meals and use them for power in their cells. To do this, the pancreas must produce the hormone insulin. Insulin assists in drawing sugar from the circulation and storing it as a source of energy in the cells.
The pancreas secretes very little insulin if you have diabetes. It will result in insulin not being able to do its job correctly. Consequently, blood glucose levels rise, but the rest of your cells lack vital energy. It can result in a wide range of side effects of diabetes that impact practically every central bodily system.
HHS in diabetes refers to Hyperosmolar Hyperglycaemic State. It generally occurs in people diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes experiencing significantly high blood sugar levels. High glucose levels mean levels higher than 40 mmoI/I. This condition can develop over time due to a combination of infections or other illnesses and dehydration. HHS can be fatal and even lead to death if timely treatment is not taken.
If you are experiencing dry skin, frequent urination, nausea, disorientation, and excessive thirst, you can get checked for HHS. While dehydration, confusion, and loss of consciousness are some common symptoms of HHS, the condition is not generally diagnosed until the person falls severely ill because of HHS. Stopping diabetes medication midway during any illness can contribute to HHS, but at times blood sugar levels rise exceptionally high even after taking medicines because of hormonal effects.
If the pancreas secretes little or no insulin, or if the body can't use it, other hormones turn fat into energy. High quantities of hazardous substances, such as acids and ketone bodies, might lead to ketoacidosis. The side effects of diabetes ketoacidosis are significant diabetes conditions. Among the signs and symptoms are:
Kidney disease caused by diabetes can injure your kidneys and reduce their ability to filter toxins from your blood. If your doctor discovers microalbuminuria or an excessive protein level in the urine, this might indicate that your kidneys aren't functioning correctly.
Diabetes nephropathy is a chronic kidney condition occurring in people with diabetes. The illness does not manifest symptoms until it is advanced. If you have diabetes, your doctor will check for nephropathy to avoid irreparable kidney damage or failure.
Diabetes makes you more likely to develop high blood pressure, putting your heart under tremendous strain. As a result of the side effects of diabetes, high blood glucose levels can cause fatty deposits to form in the walls of blood vessels. Over time, it can restrict blood flow, raising the possibility of atherosclerosis (stiffening of the arteries).
According to influential organizations, diabetes is the leading cause of heart disease and stroke. Blood glucose management, monitoring, good nutrition, and regular exercise can all assist in lowering the risk of high BP and high cholesterol levels.
The side effects of diabetes can injure your epidermis, which is the body's largest organ. In addition to dehydration, the body's lack of moisture produced by high sugar levels in the blood can cause the skin on the feet to peel and dry.
Ensure the feet are dehydrated after swimming or showering. These areas can be treated with petroleum jelly or mild lotions, but don't get them too wet. Infections of the fungal, bacterial, or yeast kind can occur in moist, warm creases of the skin. These usually manifest themselves in the following areas:
Diabetes neuropathy, or nerve damage, is a complication of diabetes. It can change how you feel about heat, cold, and discomfort. It's also more likely that you won't recognize these injuries and allow them to progress into significant illnesses or diseases.
You can characterise diabetes retinopathy by enlarged, leaky blood vessels in the eye. It can also harm your vision resulting in blindness. Because the symptoms of eye disease might be subtle at first, it's critical to see your eye doctor frequently.
Gestational diabetes can develop due to hormonal changes during pregnancy, increasing the possibility of high BP. Preeclampsia and eclampsia are two forms of high blood pressure diseases to be aware of during pregnancy.
Diabetes during pregnancy usually is straightforward to manage, and once the child is born, glucose levels begin to recover. The effects of diabetes on the body are comparable to those of other diseases; however, they may also include vaginal and bladder infections.
If you have Gestational Diabetes, you might deliver the baby with higher birth weight. It might make delivery more difficult. You're also at significant risk of acquiring type 2 diabetes after your kid is born.
There are many side effects of diabetes on different body parts, but its impact on the eyes is especially noticeable. Diabetes patients who experience eye damage generally show no symptoms in the initial stages, but particular symptoms can later start showing up. These symptoms demand instant medical attention. Glaucoma, Macular Oedema, Cataracts, and Retinopathy are some common effects of diabetes on the eyes. Most of these side effects affect your vision, so they should not be taken lightly.
When studying the effects of diabetes on the body, you have to pay special attention to diabetes’ effects on the skin. Diabetes patients can experience very dry skin because of damaged nerves and small blood vessels. You can notice extra dry skin on the feet if you are diabetic. High blood glucose levels tend to affect skin health over a period. Since our skin protects our body from infections, keeping the skin as healthy and nourished as possible is crucial. Visible cracks and potential infections can hamper the body if the skin becomes dry.
If you are wondering how diabetes affects the body, especially during pregnancy, this point will answer your question. During pregnancy, some hormones change the way they function, causing gestational diabetes. It often leads to an increased risk of high blood pressure. If you have been diagnosed recently with gestational diabetes, you should look for eclampsia and preeclampsia, two types of high blood pressure conditions.
Gestational diabetes is easily managed in most cases, and blood sugar levels return to normal levels after delivery, but there can be exceptions. Women with gestational diabetes have higher chances of giving birth to a baby with a higher-than-normal body weight, which can bring complications in the delivery process. Patients also become prone to developing Type 2 diabetes years after delivering the baby.
The effects of diabetes can be felt in feet and legs because high blood glucose levels can easily damage the blood supply in large and small blood vessels. These blood vessels carry the required nutrition to the feet and legs, so any damage to these vessels directly affects the feet and legs. Problems related to the foot’s structure, like clawed toes, can also occur. Due to the reduced blood supply and affected nerve function, your body can experience delayed healing, reduced feeling or sensations in the feet, ulcers, structural foot problems, increased risk of infections, and more.
If you were wondering what are the effects of diabetes on kidneys, this point would answer your question. Diabetes patients are at an increased risk of developing nephropathy; a kidney disease caused due to changes in kidney’s small blood vessels. You will not experience any pain from kidney disease in its nascent stage, but problems can emerge as it advances. Timely screening of kidney damage can help prevent this condition. If symptoms are picked early, nephropathy can be slowed or prevented.
People diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and severely high blood sugar levels are more prone to developing periodontal disease. Uncontrolled high blood glucose levels in mouth fluids promote bacteria growth that can give rise to various gum diseases. It even increases the severity and prevalence of gingival inflammation and periodontal destruction. Since infections arising from untreated periodontal disease can make it challenging to control diabetes, it is suggested to receive timely treatment from the doctor.
Diabetes effects on the brain cannot be avoided since even the slightest damage to the brain can disrupt your body functions to a great extent. Excessively high blood glucose levels can damage nerves and blood vessels in your brain. It leads to severe learning and memory problems. Hormonal changes, mood shifts, and Alzheimer’s are some problems diabetes patients can experience over a period.
Having uncontrollable high blood glucose levels can make you prone to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. In this condition, your liver can start accumulating fat even if you don’t drink alcohol. Many people diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes have non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. If you are obese and have Type 2 diabetes, you can reverse this liver damage with weight loss.
If you were wondering what body systems does diabetes affect, the answer is almost all body systems. Let’s learn more about the long-term effects diabetes has on people by checking the list shared below.
These are some long-term effects diabetes patients have experienced in the long term. If you want to avoid experiencing these extreme side effects, work closely with your doctor and abide by the suggestions.
Hyperglycemia or high blood sugar and high insulin levels start affecting your body years before being diagnosed with diabetes. It will injure your nerves, arteries, and organs if you do nothing about it. And the longer it is ignored, the greater the difficulties get. As a result, you run the risk of developing heart failure, having a heart attack, or having a stroke. You may lose your vision due to the effects of diabetes on the body. It may harm your kidneys, nerves, and other essential organs. However, you can protect yourself. You can quickly manage blood sugar levels, cholesterol, and blood pressure with a healthy diet, exercise, medication, and frequent exams. Even if you feel fine, sticking to your treatment plan might help you avoid significant injury.
Type 2 diabetes affects some of the major organs of your body including the heart and kidney. If the condition is not under control then you might face complications like heart and blood vessel damage leading to strokes and attacks, neuropathy which generally starts from the toes and causes numbness as the nerve is damaged, Kidney and eye damage, skin conditions, etc. A person with type 2 diabetes may also experience hyperglycemic hyperosmolar syndrome in which the patient becomes extremely dehydrated and may even pass out.
Some of the prominent body parts are affected by diabetes as the entire circulation gets disrupted due to fluctuating sugar levels that cause small blood vessels in your kidneys, eyes, nerves, etc., to get damaged. One may face diabetic foot ulcers or infections caused due to injured epidermis. At times, diabetes also affects the reproductive system causing vaginal and bladder infections due to gestational diabetes.
Glucose is the simplest form of carbohydrate that acts as fuel for the body. Glucose ensures that our body is in well-working order. When we eat something our body releases enzymes that work along with the pancreas for the breakdown of food. The pancreas that releases insulin is an important hormone that deals with glucose. However, a diabetic patient is unable to produce or utilize glucose which means the effect will be directly on their glucose levels. Having too high or low levels of glucose causes complications in the normal function of the body.
Diabetes can affect your entire circulation system and heart. It includes the small blood vessels in your nerves, eyes, kidneys, etc. The bigger blood vessels feeding your brain and heart are also affected, causing significant damage to your body. If you want to keep the condition under control, try to maintain healthy blood sugar levels from the start.
If your diabetes condition is left uncontrolled, it can damage all body parts. Your kidneys, eyes, feet, heart, and nerves, everything can get impacted, negatively impacting your regular body functioning. Losing vision, structural foot damage, kidney damage, and skin discoloration are some ways in which diabetes may affect your body.
Diabetes patients can experience the following effects:
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