Mild diabetes symptoms occur at the onset of the disease, typically when sugar levels are in the moderate range. Beginning symptoms progress quickly in Type 1 Diabetes, whereas in Type 2 Diabetes, symptoms are often vague and misdiagnosed due to a life-long development of the disease.
Diagnosing mild symptoms of diabetes in the early stages is helpful in the prevention of more serious complications. Untreated diabetes results in such high sugar levels in the bloodstream that vital organs, cells and blood vessels begin to fail the body causing a series of complications such as neuropathy, retinopathy and nephropathy. These serious conditions can lead to blindness, decreased circulation resulting in the amputation of limbs, kidney and liver failure and an array of painful side effects. Daily insulin injections, dialysis, organ transplants and frequent hospitalization are preventable if mild diabetes symptoms are diagnosed and treated at the onset.
Increased infections and slow healing are common symptoms of mild diabetes. Skin infections, urinary tract and vaginal infections, athlete’s foot, boils and ulcers may begin to plague the body and reoccur even after prolonged treatment. Frequent infections occur in diabetics due to high levels of sugar in the bloodstream that attract bacteria and viruses. Fighting and curing infection becomes a challenge as free radical damage to the cells and blood vessels weaken the immune system, and declining circulation prevents oxygen from reaching and healing injuries and infections.
Diabetic neuropathy symptoms can set in during mild diabetes causing numbness and tingling in the limbs, blurred vision, vaginal dryness, erectile failure, early menopause and decreased periods. Neurovascular, metabolic and autoimmune effects of the disease combine to deplete the body of healthy blood vessels needed for proper nerve function. Inflamed nerves and exposure to high glucose levels and low insulin levels result in damaged nerve fibers, with mild symptoms progressing to severe conditions such as; paralysis, low blood pressure, decreased balance and coordination, vision loss, muscle and joint paint, and mood disorders.
Hypoglycemia occurs when sugar levels fall below 70 mg/dL, and can be a symptom of mild diabetes if snacks or meals are missed or if too much insulin is taken. Symptoms of hypoglycemia include insatiable hunger, anxiety, dizziness, clammy skin, increased heartbeat and shaking. Hypoglycemic episodes can worsen causing mental confusion, slurred speech, weakness, poor coordination and balance, unconsciousness and seizures if sugar levels dangerously decrease below 55 mg/dL. Monitoring glucose levels before and after snacks, meals, injections and exercise will help prevent hypoglycemia.
Symptoms of mild diabetes can alert a diabetic or medical professional to the condition so that proper diagnosis and treatment can begin. Exercise, diet and regular glucose monitoring can be effective in preventing the need for insulin injections and can avert the onset of degenerative conditions associated with the disease.