Home » today » Health » 6 strange signs that your blood sugar may be too high – “Not many people think of it” – 2024-02-27 05:36:32

6 strange signs that your blood sugar may be too high – “Not many people think of it” – 2024-02-27 05:36:32

High blood sugar for a long time wreaks havoc on the entire body. It can also unexpectedly be found in the background of many common hand and foot ailments.

Blood sugar that has been elevated for a long time can be completely symptomless, but it can still cause enormous damage to the body.

Sometimes type 2 diabetes is found only after another disease has broken out and is a background devil even in surprising ailments.

– High blood sugar that smolders for a long time is really insidious and can at least be behind restless legs, a frozen shoulder, neuropathic pain conditions in the legs and chronic ulcers, says the diabetes association’s chief medical officer Elina Pimi.

According to Pimiä, for example, a person with shoulder pain is rarely able to think that high sugar levels could be behind the trouble.

– This doesn’t come to many people’s minds, but unfortunately, high sugar maintains an irritated state in the tissues and inside the joint, so that ailments also easily become chronic.

Also, for example, carpal tunnel syndrome and plantar fasciopathy, which causes heel pain, are common ailments of diabetics.

Diabetics are more likely than the rest of the population to experience frozen shoulder syndrome, various pressure and compression injuries, and carpal tunnel stenosis. Adobe Stock / AOP

Numerous diseases

The dangers of undiagnosed diabetes are also evident from a recent British study.

A study led by the University of Exeter found that persistently high blood sugar increased the risk of several musculoskeletal disorders. In addition to frozen shoulder, they included nerve compression such as carpal tunnel syndrome and the so-called snap finger, where the tendon sheath of the flexor tendon of the finger becomes inflamed, which in turn causes the tendon sheath to narrow.

Dupuytren’s contracture, a connective tissue disease that causes bending of the fingers, was also common.

According to the authors of the study, these diseases can be classified as complications of diabetes.

The results of the study involving a total of 370,000 participants were published in the International Journal of Epidemiology.

Dupuytren’s contracture, or Viking’s disease, is more common in diabetics. In that case, the tendon membrane in the palm thickens and shortens, which bends the fingers. Adobe stock/AOP

They become chronic easily

High blood sugar causes problems because the breakdown products of sugar or glucose metabolism are stored in tendons, nerves and connective tissue.

This accumulation of waste products is thought to cause damage and thickening of tendons, joints and connective tissues.

When a person has high blood sugar, ailments also heal more slowly. For example, a frozen shoulder can become chronic.

– Both frozen shoulder, carpal tunnel syndrome and the so-called snap fingers are more difficult to treat in diabetics. It is easier to have surgery and the results of surgery may be weaker than others, says Pimiä.

For example, cortisone can be used to treat a snapping finger that bends the fingers, but according to Pimiä, it does not work as well for a diabetic or only helps for a while.

Chronic pain also applies to, for example, plantar fasciopathy, which causes sharp pain in the heel area.

– Even if the pain in the heel or wrist started as a result of overexertion, the situation often does not return to normal, but the high level of sugar maintains an inflammatory state in the tissue.

The risk of carpal tunnel syndrome is increased by, among other things, being overweight and diabetes. A low-salt diet, exercise and weight loss are useful in reducing symptoms. Adobe Stock / AOP

Latent for a long time

Knee and hip osteoarthritis are also common diseases for diabetics. Osteoarthritis can occur even if you are not overweight.

– It is easy to think that osteoarthritis in these areas is only related to being overweight, but this is not the case. Elevated blood sugar and prediabetes are linked to osteoarthritis even in younger people, regardless of weight. Bad blood sugar maintains reactions inside the joints.

The problem is that many Finns do not know that they have type 2 diabetes. The Diabetes Association has estimated that 100,000 people have it without knowing it. At worst, the disease is only recognized in connection with, for example, a heart attack.

Illness does not arise suddenly. Blood sugar rises gradually over months or often years when disturbances occur in sugar metabolism.

Untreated, high blood sugar for years can damage arteries and small blood vessels. In addition to problems with the musculoskeletal system, this exposes you to, among other things, heart and brain infarctions and other heart diseases. The higher the average blood sugar, the higher the risk of additional diseases.

Pimi recommends also remembering the possibility of high sugar levels if you suffer from recurring ailments that do not heal well and have accumulated extra pounds around your waist.

– If at the age of 40-50 you have a lot of problems with the musculoskeletal system and are a little overweight, you should also think about whether you could be motivated to lose a few kilos.

Pimiä understands that, for example, someone who has come to the doctor’s office because of shoulder pain may find it confusing that the doctor tells them to lose weight.

– However, it is known that a frozen shoulder can heal better if your own metabolism improves. The body is a whole, and diabetes and overweight can also be felt in the shoulder or wrist.

There are approximately 400,000 people with type 2 diabetes in Finland. The disease is increasing rapidly all over the world and among younger and younger people. Adobe Stock / AOP


A simple experiment

Type 2 diabetes is easy to detect with blood tests. It can be determined by a sugar stress test, elevated fasting blood sugar, random sugar measurement or based on “long-term sugar” (HbA1c).

If you suspect that you have type 2 diabetes, contact a health center, occupational health service or a private doctor’s office. Blood sugar can be measured in different laboratories even without a doctor’s referral.

Possible signs

There are certain signs that can indicate nerve damage caused by diabetes.

However, the symptoms alone do not yet tell whether they are definitely caused by diabetes. If the symptoms below occur, and especially if there have been fluctuations in sugar levels, you should tell your doctor about the symptoms.

1. Lower limbs or feet are often numb

Numbness in the legs can be caused by a blood circulation disorder, but it can also be a symptom of nerve compression.

The feeling of numbness can be caused by high blood sugar.

The blades of the feet may also feel numb when walking. Diabetes and the associated high blood sugar and blood circulation disorders damage the function of sensory nerves and muscle innervation.

2. Burning pain is felt in the lower limbs and/or feet

Burning pain may be caused by diabetes. Burning, rippling pain can also be caused by nerve pressure.

3. Cold and hot water feel the same

Diabetes-related sensory nerve damage often begins as a hypersensitivity to sensation. Then it can be difficult to distinguish temperatures on the skin. The symptom is dangerous, because the weakening of the ability to differentiate between cold and warm exposes you to burns and frostbite.

4. It feels as if the sock is wrinkled

The sensation of a wrinkled sock or the feeling of walking on half a tennis ball can also indicate sensory nerve damage. The legs can also sting.

It can also be nerve pressure, which is accompanied by burning pain.

5. The symptoms get worse towards evening

Pain caused by diabetes-related nerve damage often worsens in the evening. The feet can also be frostbitten and the skin cold. Then the nervous changes in the autonomic function can disturb the blood circulation of the peripheral parts.

6. The wound on the leg does not heal

High blood sugar slows wound healing. Healing is also slowed down due to diabetes-related nervous system and blood circulation problems.


Type 2 diabetes does not develop suddenly

Type 2 diabetes is always preceded by prediabetes, which is estimated to be present in approximately one million Finns.

Often in prediabetes, both are found, elevated fasting sugar and impaired sugar tolerance. Sometimes only one of the disorders is found.

Diabetes may not cause any symptoms, but rapid fluctuations in blood sugar can cause, for example, weakness and lack of appetite.

It would be important to catch elevated blood sugar in the early stages, so that it does not have time to progress to actual type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is often preceded by the metabolic syndrome MBO, i.e. sugar-fat disorder. Its background is both heredity and lifestyle: overweight and lack of exercise.

Changing lifestyles can completely prevent type 2 diabetes or at least delay the disease in those who are at high risk of developing the disease.

Also used as a source: Diabetes Association, Terveyskirjasto.fi

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