5 Symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes Older Adults May Experience

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Diabetes is a life-altering metabolic disease that can result in a wide array of health complications. Luckily, diabetes can often be controlled or completely reversed as long as it’s diagnosed early on and sweeping changes are made to the diet. Here are five of the most common symptoms of type 2 diabetes and a few steps seniors can take to control their insulin levels.

1. Fatigue

Seniors who have type 2 diabetes often experience multiple energy crashes throughout the day. As the disease progresses, seniors might constantly feel tired or lethargic no matter how much sleep they’re getting. If your aging loved one is getting plenty of sleep, but always seems to be tired, he or she needs to be tested for diabetes. When this condition is diagnosed early on, it can typically be reversed by changing lifestyle habits, including sticking to a healthy diet, avoiding processed sweeteners, and exercising for two or three hours a week. 

Professional caregivers can help aging adults prepare nutritious meals and exercise regularly to boost physical wellbeing. If your elderly loved one needs help maintaining healthy habits, consider hiring a professional caregiver. Families can rely on Home Care Assistance Lincoln to provide dedicated and compassionate in-home caregivers who are trained in our holistic Balanced Care Method, which was designed to encourage seniors to exercise often, eat nutritious foods, maintain strong social ties, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity.

2. Suddenly Gaining or Losing Weight

One of the most common misconceptions about diabetes is the disease is directly tied to obesity. Being overweight increases the risk of diabetes, but this condition can result in sudden weight loss as well. Some seniors lose an incredible amount of weight in a short time when they can’t process sugar. Even if your loved one doesn’t have diabetes, you must carefully track his or her weight at all times.

3. Sores That Won’t Heal Properly

The body won’t be able to heal itself when it can’t process sugar or produce insulin, which is one of the reasons many seniors with diabetes develop wounds that won’t heal. Those wounds are typically found on the feet and legs, but they can develop anywhere on the body. If the wounds aren’t cleaned and dressed every day, they’ll most likely become infected. Those who care for seniors with diabetes need to speak with a doctor about how to properly clean and dress open sores.

Sometimes family caregivers become overwhelmed when helping a senior loved one with diabetes. If you’re the primary caregiver for a senior family member and are looking for professional elderly home care, Lincoln Home Care Assistance should be your top choice. Our dedicated and compassionate caregivers are committed to helping older adults manage their health and enjoy a higher quality of life in the golden years.

4. Loss of Feeling in the Extremities

Another common symptom of type 2 diabetes is a condition known as diabetic neuropathy. Nerves are reliant on sugar, and they won’t be able to send signals when they don’t have that source of energy. Over time, nerve endings might completely die off in the feet, calves, and hands. Before that occurs, seniors will probably notice other issues such as a tingling or burning sensation in those areas of the body. Diabetic neuropathy is usually treated with topical analgesics, compression clothing, and nerve pain medication.

5. Blurred Vision

Diabetic retinopathy is a common symptom of diabetes, and it generally results in blurred vision. The eyes naturally lose fluid when blood sugar is too high, which makes it difficult to focus. The only way to test for diabetic retinopathy is to have a dilated eye exam. Naturally increasing insulin levels is one of the most effective ways to reverse this form of retinopathy, but an eye doctor might also suggest laser surgery as a temporary solution.

Aging adults with type 2 diabetes may face difficulty accomplishing simple household tasks and living independently. Certain age-related conditions can make it more challenging for seniors to age in place safely and comfortably, but Lincoln live-in care experts are available around the clock to help seniors manage their health. Whether your loved one is living with dementia or is recovering from a stroke, you can trust the professional live-in caregivers from Home Care Assistance to enhance his or her quality of life. Give us a call today at 916.226.3737 to create a tailored care plan for your aging parent.