Seniors can do their part to reduce the risk of developing diabetes by exercising and eating a reasonable diet. As a caregiver, you can further enhance your aging loved one’s health by keeping an eye out for these five signs of type 2 diabetes.
1. Frequent Urination
Many older adults experience frequent urination due to health conditions such as an enlarged prostate or a urinary tract infection. However, you should be concerned about any marked increase in the frequency of trips to the bathroom, especially if they aren’t explained by other known health issues. Frequent urination happens when too much glucose builds up in the blood and the kidneys attempt to flush it out. Always mention changes in your loved one’s bathroom habits to the doctor so he or she can watch for diabetes.
If your loved one lives alone, you may not be able to monitor his or her urination habits, but a professional in-home caregiver can do this and much more. There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to address if their families opt for professional home care. You can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep your loved one safe and comfortable while aging in place.
2. Excessive Thirst
Those frequent trips to the bathroom caused by high glucose levels also generate other symptoms in the body. Frequent urination dehydrates the body, which may manifest as increased thirst. Your loved one may also complain of a dry mouth with this symptom, but a drink of water may not be enough to quench his or her thirst. While your loved one should be drinking several glasses of water a day, you need to be worried if he or she starts requesting drinks much more frequently or guzzles several glasses at once.
3. Weight Loss
People often associate being overweight with having diabetes, but your loved one could also lose weight because the fluctuations in blood sugar levels are robbing cells of the energy they need to function. Your loved one may also experience malnutrition that results in weight loss if the frequent urination flushes out too many nutrients before they can have an effect on the body.
Seniors who are malnourished are more likely to develop other conditions as a result of not getting proper nutrition. Living with serious health conditions can make it challenging for seniors to age in place. However, they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional live-in care. Colorado Springs seniors can benefit from assistance with meal prep, bathing, transportation to the doctor’s office, medication reminders, and much more.
4. Increased Infections
Diabetes also increases susceptibility to common diseases. For example, yeast thrives in a sugar-filled environment, which is why frequent vaginal infections are a sign of diabetes in women. Both men and women can develop thrush in the mouth or fungal infections on other parts of the body. In addition to yeast infections, skin infections on the feet are another sign of unbalanced blood sugar levels. Since the feet are the parts of the body farthest away from the heart, poor blood circulation caused by diabetes may make it difficult for minor scratches and injuries to heal.
5. Blurred Vision
Poor vision is a common malady seniors experience, and it’s normal for an eyewear prescription to change over time. However, vision that fluctuates from blurry to normal at random intervals could be a sign of diabetes. The lens on the eye is flexible, and it’s affected by changes in the body that occur with fluctuating sugar levels. Always mention changes in your loved one’s vision to the physician, even if they seem temporary.
Diabetes is a common disease among seniors, and it’s crucial to diagnose it as early as possible so seniors can get effective treatment and start to adopt healthier habits. Maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them obtain this goal. Families can trust Colorado Springs senior care experts to help their elderly loved ones focus on lifestyle choices that increase the chances of living a longer and healthier life. We will work with you to create a customized home care plan that’s suited for your loved one’s unique needs. Call the Home Care Assistance team at (719) 822-1229 today.