The following symptoms are not experienced by everyone with diabetes, but they can signal the disease, and are worth looking out for.
• Weight loss
• Erectile dysfunction
• Dry, itchy skin
• Frequent infections, such as yeast infections in women
• Dry mouth
How is Diabetes Diagnosed
The same tests used to screen and diagnose diabetes are used to detect individuals with pre-diabetes. There are a few ways you can be diagnosed.
Your doctor can carry out a number of blood tests, depending on whether or not you have any symptoms.
Whether you are at a high or low risk for diabetes, your physician will use the same tests:
• Random glucose test (if you’re symptomatic)
• Fasting glucose test (a test done when you haven’t eaten for 8 hours)
• Two-hour glucose tolerance test
• Hemoglobin a1c test (a three-month average of your blood sugar)
Sometimes people don’t experience symptoms of diabetes and the diagnosis is made not because the doctor suspects the disease, but as a result of a routine check-up.
For someone who does not have any symptoms to be considered to have type 2 diabetes, they must:
• Have a fasting blood sugar (no food eaten for 8 hours) greater than or equal to 126 mg/dL
• Have a blood sugar of 200mg/dL after 2 hours during a glucose tolerance test using 75g glucose solution.
• Have a hemoglobin A1c of 6.5% or higher.
If You’ve Recently Been Diagnosed with Diabetes
If you have just been diagnosed with diabetes, it’s normal to feel a bit scared, confused, and overwhelmed.
There are so many myths floating about regarding diabetes, which can make it more difficult to cope with. Try not to listen to things that other people have to say, such as, you can never eat carbohydrates again.
Instead, educate yourself.
Talk with your doctor about connecting with certified diabetes educators and receiving diabetes self—management education.
Learning all about what to eat, what your medication does, and how to test your blood sugar levels are just some of the things these resources can help you with. Educators can also dispel myths, create meal plans for you, coordinate other doctor appointments for you, and listen to all your needs. They have been trained to teach using a patient-centered approach.