The symptoms of pre-diabetes are difficult to identify unless people visit the doctor for a routine checkup or a blood test. Sometimes, people go without knowing that they have this condition for years together. Therefore, it becomes very important for people to learn the risk factors and get medically checked for pre-diabetes very frequently, especially after reaching the age of 40.
A major pre-diabetes symptom is acanthosis nigricans, which is a poorly defined, little-known hyperpigmentation of the skin. In this condition, there is darkening of the skin that is mostly spotted in the neck, under the breasts, between the legs, armpits, or wherever the skin comes together. This condition is mostly genetically inherited and is noticed in people below the age of 40. Insulin resistance is the main cause of this condition in which the insulin spills over into the skin. Acanthosis nigricans is also considered to be a side effect of medications like protease inhibitors, niacin, glucocorticoids, and oral contraceptives, which ultimately lead to elevated insulin levels. Some of the noticeable pre-diabetes symptoms are;
- Blurred vision
- Frequent urination
- Excessive thirst
- Slower healing of cuts and bruises
- Unexplained or unplanned weight loss
- Unusual amount of weight gain
- Recurring gum or skin infections
- Frequent vaginal and/or bladder infections
- Tingling in the hands or feet
- Constant feeling of hunger
People who notice these pre-diabetes symptoms should check with a doctor immediately. If diagnosed in time, a pre-diabetic condition can be prevented from developing into a diabetic condition through adequate measures in the form of diet and exercise including other forms of definitive treatment.
If people let their elevated blood sugar levels stay high for a long period of time, they are bound to suffer the complications and side effects of diabetes. It is very important to note that the symptoms of pre-diabetes, although similar to type 2 diabetes, are very subtle. So, it is also important to take into account a few other factors like age, family history of diabetes, height, weight, diet, and amount of physical activity.
Women generally, display additional signs of pre-diabetes. Some of these pre-diabetes signs are severe acne, excess hair on the face, difficulty getting pregnant, and irregular menstrual cycles. Women developing diabetes during gestation are also at higher risk of developing prediabetes. If the baby born weighs more than 9 pounds, the mother is at a very high risk of developing pre-diabetes in the near future. In women with polycystic ovary syndrome, irregular menstrual periods, obesity, and excessive hair growth are some other symptoms of pre-diabetes.
Unplanned or unexplained loss of weight is a subtle pre-diabetes symptom noticed in both men and women, and medical experts advise that the doctor should be consulted at the earliest. This symptom is noticeable mainly in relation to type 1 diabetes. Weight loss is not a symptom much associated with type 2 diabetes. A pre-diabetic condition does not necessarily develop into a diabetic condition, although there is a strong likelihood, if proper measures are not taken to reduce the blood sugar levels. People with slightly elevated blood sugar levels are advised to make suitable alterations to their lifestyle.