Diabetic Hyperosmolar Syndrome: A Major Indicator of Diabetes Mellitus Onset

Those of us with type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, myself included, are all too familiar with this scenario; You are thirsty, thirsty beyond belief and nothing will quench your thirst, but you just keep drinking more and more liquids. You urinate more and more, but your brain tells you that there is nothing wrong, you are drinking lots of liquids, and naturally you will urinate more, and if it is summer time, even worse for you as the heat of the day becomes justification for the massive amounts of liquid you are putting into your body.

Your vision is getting blurry, so much so that you may need to put on a pair of very strong reading glasses just to see enough to drive. Your mouth becomes dry, to the point of adding more fluids to your already liquefied tissues. You develop a fever, but don’t notice it because your skin is just as hot as your head, and you get confused and sleepy, and may even start to see things that just aren’t there.

Sound familiar? If you have type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, and it discovered you before you discovered it, you probably have experienced this behavior in the days and weeks leading up to the day when you were officially diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes Mellitus.

This disorder is called Diabetic Hyperosmolar Syndrome.

Diabetic Hyperosmolar Syndrome occurs when your blood sugar reaches a very high level, making your blood thick like Karo syrup, and increases the salt level in your blood, which causes water to move into your blood, taking it away from your tissues and causing dehydration as an end result.

If you haven’t already been diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes Mellitus and you are experiencing these symptoms, you need to seek immediate medical attention, as these are warning signs of the onset of type 2 Diabetes Mellitus.

If you have already been diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes Mellitus and you are experiencing these symptoms again, you also need to seek immediate medical attention, as these symptoms are a sure sign that your blood glucose level is probably over 600 MG/DL, and your chances of slipping into a diabetic coma are extremely high.

If you haven’t been diagnosed previously, this is your wake-up call. Most of us, again myself included, show up at the emergency room with a blood glucose level in the area of 600-800 MG/DL. When I discovered I had type 2 diabetes, my blood glucose level upon admission to the hospital was 834 MG/DL, and the ER nurse and Resident on duty asked me how in the heck did I manage to drive myself to the hospital, and wondered why I wasn’t dead.

Scary, huh?

So if you are not a type 2 diabetic, pay attention to the warning signs; extreme thirst and urination, fever, cotton mouth, hot skin with no sweating, blurry vision, sleepiness and confusion with possible hallucinations, and in the worst of all possible outcomes, convulsions, coma and death.

If you are type 2 diabetic and you experience these symptoms again, check your blood glucose level, which you should already have a handle on if you are paying attention to your condition.

If you are paying attention to your condition, i.e. eating healthy, with lots of fruits and vegetables, limiting sugars and carbohydrates, avoiding pre-packaged foods and so on, don’t dismiss your high blood glucose level as a mistake or worse, it may mean you have other health problems, like an infection.

Infections of any kind, even as simple as the common cold can cause your blood glucose levels to rise and fluctuate. When I say fluctuate, I mean you can test your sugar and it may be let’s say 185 MG/DL, and then check it 5 minutes later and it is 275 MG/DL, and then check it a third time and it is 120 MG/DL. This fluctuation is the big indicator.

Infections cause your sugar level to rise because your body releases stress hormones in response to the infection, which help fight the infection. This may cause your blood glucose levels to rise, in addition to increasing insulin resistance, magnifying the problem.

Maintaining a proper glucose level is essential, as diabetics are at higher risk of infection for certain types of infections, such as urinary tract infections and yeast infections. Un-controlled blood glucose levels allow certain micro-organisms to multiply at a faster rate, as the excess sugar in your blood creates a perfect environment for these bacterium to thrive.

Having a sick day plan is a good idea, as planning for a potential problem will lessen the length and severity of any sickness. Plenty of fluids and paying strict attention to your sugar levels is also recommended. Always consult your Doctor if any of these symptoms appear, because he will know what to do.

As a type 2 diabetic for 12 years now, my body tells me when my sugar levels are too high, and yours will too, just pay attention.

Prevention is the key. Listen to your body and realize when your sugar is high, create and follow a meal plan, test your blood glucose level often and if prescribed, take your medicine as directed by your doctor. Staying active and getting daily exercise is a good bet, and losing some weight will also have positive effects.

Article by Jim Donahue

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