Symptoms of Diabetes Mellitus

The onset of symptoms in type 1 diabetes is usually sudden. Symptoms due to type 2 diabetes often develop gradually over years. Symptoms include:

  • Increased frequency of urination
  • Breath has “chemical” smell similar to a nail polish
  • Excessive thirst and fluid intake
  • Unexplained tiredness or drowsiness
  • Increased hunger
  • Itchy and dry skin
  • Weight loss that is not deliberate
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Rapid breathing
  • Blurred vision
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Numbness and/or tingling in the hands and feet
  • Pain in the abdomen
  • Recurring infections, such as urinary tract and vaginal yeast infections
  • Slow healing of cuts and wounds

Complicating symptoms requiring immediate care:

  • Diabetic ketoacidosis. This is a potentially life threatening complication caused by insufficient insulin. It is most common in people with type 1 diabetes, but can also occur in those with type 2 diabetes. Symptoms: dry mouth, flushed skin, fruity-smelling breath, difficulty breathing, vomiting, and abdominal pain.
  • Hyperosmolar nonketotic states. This is another potentially fatal complication, usually associated with extremely high blood glucose levels in type 2 diabetes patients. Symptoms: Extreme thirst, lethargy, weakness and confusion. In about one third of people with type 2 diabetes, these symptoms are the first sign of their disease.
  • People experiencing symptoms indicating either of these conditions should contact their doctors at once. If unconsciousness occurs, an ambulance should be called immediately.

Source:

The Complete Home Wellness Handbook

John Edward Swartzberg, M.D., F.A.C.P., Sheldon Margen, M.D., and the editors of the UC Berkeley Wellness Letter

Updated by Remedy Health Media

Publication Review By: the Editorial Staff at HealthCommunities.com

Published: 10 Nov 2011

Last Modified: 23 Jul 2013