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Do You Have Diabetes?

Woman talking to healthcare provider.

Diabetes is a condition in which your body has trouble using a sugar called glucose for energy. As a result, the sugar level in your blood becomes too high. Diabetes is a chronic (lifelong) condition. Left untreated, it can result in major health problems (complications) or serious life-threatening conditions such as ketoacidosis. 

Signs of diabetes

Do any of the following questions apply to you? If so, see your healthcare provider. 

  • Do you feel tired all the time?

  • Do you urinate often?

  • Do you feel thirsty or hungry all the time?

  • Are you losing weight for no reason?

  • Do cuts and bruises heal slowly?

  • Do you have numbness or tingling in your fingers or toes?

  • Do you have blurry vision? 

What puts you at risk?

People of all backgrounds can get diabetes. More often, though, it affects African Americans, Native Americans, Hispanics, Asian Americans, and Pacific Islanders. Other factors that increase risk include:

  • A family history of diabetes

  • Being overweight

  • Being over age 40

  • Having had gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy)

  • Not enough physical activity

  • If you take certain medicines 

Why worry about diabetes?

Reasons include the following: 

  • Diabetes keeps your body from turning food into energy.

  • Diabetes can cause problems with your eyes, kidneys, nerves, and feet. It can also hurt your heart and blood vessels.

  • Once you get diabetes, it won’t go away.

See your healthcare provider for a checkup if you have any of the signs or risks listed above.

Online Medical Reviewer: Hurd, Robert, MD
Online Medical Reviewer: Image reviewed by StayWell art team.
Online Medical Reviewer: Sather, Rita, RN
Date Last Reviewed: 6/1/2016
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