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Warning Signs & Risk

Warning Signs

The symptoms of diabetes often develop gradually and are not noticeable at first. Symptoms include:


  • Being very thirsty.
  • Urinating a lot -- often at night.
  • Blurry vision from time to time.
  • Feeling tired much of the time.
  • Losing weight without trying.
  • Very dry skin.
  • Sores that are slow to heal.
  • Getting more infections than usual.
  • Losing feeling or getting a tingling feeling in the feet.
  • Vomiting.


These symptoms become more severe as blood sugar levels increase.

Risk Factors

Diabetes is not contagious. People cannot "catch" it from each other. However, certain factors can increase the risk of developing diabetes. These risk factors include:


  • Obesity. 
  • Sedentary lifestyle. 
  • Family history. 
  • Ethnicity - African Americans, Hispanics, Asians, and American Indians are at higher risk. 
  • Pregnancy - Women who develop diabetes while pregnant (gestational diabetes) have a 35 percent to 60 percent chance of developing type 2 diabetes in the next 10 to 20 years. 
  • Blood pressure at or above 140/90 mm/Hg. 
  • Abnormal blood fat levels (high density lipoproteins (HDL) less than or equal to 35 mg/dl or triglycerides greater than or equal to 250 mg/dl). 
  • Impaired glucose tolerance and/or high fasting glucose values.


Source: CDC-Diabetes Fact Sheet