Effects of Diabetes on the Body Systems
You’ve been diagnosed with diabetes, but what exactly does that mean? I don’t want to frighten you, but it could mean dire consequences if it’s not taken seriously. Today, we will be looking at the effects of diabetes on the body. Read on to learn more.
When diabetes is out of control (or undiagnosed), the effects of diabetes can be damaging your body’s systems before you even know it. High blood sugars cause many problems in all of the systems of the body.
We’ll start at the top: the brain and nervous system. Uncontrolled diabetes can wreak havoc on the brain and nervous system.
High or low blood sugars can affect thought processes. They can cause memory problems, confusion, lethargy, and can eventually lead to coma and death.
High blood sugars can cause nerve damage, leaving you with constant pain in your extremities. This mainly affects your hands, arms, legs, and feet. Nerve damage is irreversible. The only thing you can do is take a prescription nerve blocker.
The Cardiovascular System
High blood glucose can cause veins and artery walls to harden and narrow, causing high blood pressure. Diabetes is a leading cause of heart disease in the United States.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the risk of stroke or dying of heart disease increases by 200-400 percent for adults with diabetes.
The Urinary System
Your kidneys are a very important part of your body’s ability to remove waste and filter the blood. High levels of sugar in the blood stream can cause kidney damage. As your body tries to flush the sugar out (through urine), the kidneys suffer the consequences.
The American Diabetes Association cites Diabetes as one of the leading causes of kidney failure.
When your kidneys fail, the only way to filter your blood is through machine dialysis. This is an exhausting procedure where doctors insert a large IV into your arm and pull the blood out to filter it through a large machine. Sound like fun? Nope.
The effects of diabetes, if uncontrolled, are widespread throughout the body.
Fluctuations in vision can occur with high and low blood sugars.
When blood vessels become constricted, you can get high blood pressure. This added pressure can cause the blood vessels in the eye to burst, causing blocked vision. Surgery may be necessary to repair the ruptured vessels.
Healing is affected by high blood sugar levels. Minor cuts and injuries can take weeks to heal if blood glucose is out of control.
This can be one of the effects of diabetes. Poor circulation can cause numbness, tingling, and possibly loss of limbs.
If you get a cut that you cannot feel on the bottom of your feet, it can become infected. Eventually if it goes untreated, gangrene can set in. If this happens, the foot will need to be amputated.
According to Medical News Today, skin problems that commonly affect diabetics include:
dark patches of skin (acanthosis nigricans)
People with diabetes are also more likely to suffer from common skin problems, including:
bacterial infections like styes or boils
fungal infections like athlete's foot and ringworm
Roundish, brown, scaly patches develop in the harmless skin condition known as diabetic dermopathy.
Don’t let the effects of diabetes get you down. If you take good care of yourself and keep your blood glucose levels under control, you can avoid these effects. To learn more about how to control your diabetes, check out my other blogs HERE.
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