It can be very challenging to treat type 2 diabetes before the symptoms turn into complications, since the symptoms can be so difficult to notice. Just a small increase in blood glucose levels can have long-term effects on your health.
Complications linked to type 2 diabetes
Diabetics have up to five times the risk of developing heart diseases or having a stroke than people without diabetes. If type 2 diabetes is not discovered or managed poorly, the unmanaged blood glucose levels can cause atherosclerosis, a narrowing of the blood vessels. Atherosclerosis can cause blood clots, anginas, heart attacks and strokes. The blood vessels of the kidneys can also get blocked and if not treated it can cause kidney failure.
If blood vessels in the retina (the light sensitive layer of tissue in the eye) get blocked, it will prevent light from passing through. This is called retinopathy and can damage your vision if it is not treated.
Foot problems are quite common in people with type 2 diabetes. This is mainly caused by damage to the nerves, which affects the sensory feeling in the feet. Without the sensory feeling it becomes difficult to notice cuts and scrapes, which can lead to a foot ulcer developing. About one in ten diabetics get a foot ulcer, so be aware of cuts, swollen feet and hot skin, since foot ulcers can cause serious infections.
Source: UK National Health Service
Last updated: 3/2/17