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Type 2 Diabetes - Symptoms

Some people who have type 2 diabetes may not have any symptoms early on. Many people with the disease don't even know they have it at first. But with time, diabetes starts to cause symptoms.

High blood sugar

Common symptoms of high blood sugar include:

See more about symptoms of high blood sugar.

The higher your blood sugar rises, the more likely you are to have symptoms. If you have higher-than-normal blood sugar and don't drink enough liquids, you can get dehydrated. This can make you feel dizzy and weak, and it can lead to an emergency called a hyperosmolar state.

To learn what to do in an emergency, see When to Call a Doctor.

Low blood sugar

When your blood sugar is too low, it can also cause problems. And it can happen suddenly. Quickly treating low blood sugar can help you avoid passing out (losing consciousness). You can pass out when your blood sugar gets very low. Low blood sugar can also lead to a heart attack.

Common symptoms of low blood sugar include:

See more about symptoms of low blood sugar.

If you aren't able to tell when your blood sugar is too low (hypoglycemic unawareness), it's a good idea to test your blood sugar often. But you're not likely to get low blood sugar unless you take insulin or other diabetes medicines.

actionset.gif Diabetes: Dealing With Low Blood Sugar From Insulin
actionset.gif Diabetes: Dealing With Low Blood Sugar From Medicines

To learn what to do in an emergency, see When to Call a Doctor.

Know what your results mean


Rhonda O'Brien, certified diabetes educator

As important as regular testing is, you also need to know what the results mean and how to use them. "Look for patterns. If your blood sugar is always high before lunch, take a look at what you had for breakfast. Maybe you need to make some changes."-Rhonda

Learn blood sugar testing tips from Rhonda O'Brien.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: September 29, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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