Whether you are the primary caregiver for your aging parent or whether you hire someone from a senior care agency to help out, you always have to be on the lookout for new complications or symptoms of a medical problem.
Type 2 diabetes is a prevalent disease in America, and oftentimes in seniors, its symptoms go unnoticed. This is because the symptoms do not manifest themselves the same way in the elderly as they do in someone younger.
Here are a few of the signs and symptoms of Type 2 diabetes in seniors. If you notice any of these symptoms in your aging loved one, be sure to schedule a trip to the doctor for a check-up, to make sure that everything is alright.
- Dry mouth – While one of the more notable symptoms of diabetes is thirst, this symptom does not always appear in the same way in elderly patients, due to their changing bodies as they age. Many seniors already have issues with thirst, so it is difficult to tell if it is an illness presenting itself, or just a normal, day-to-day sensation. Instead, look out for dry mouth, dry eyes, and dehydration, all of which can indicate the presence of Type 2 diabetes.
- Confusion – Many senior care providers find that the seniors in their care often suffer from confusion as a result of the medications they are taking, or because of deteriorating health. Confusion, however, can also be a sign of diabetes, so if it occurs with the other symptoms listed here, or without the presence of any new medicines or treatments, you should get it checked out by a doctor.
- Incontinence – Again, many seniors have problems with urinary incontinence. However, if they have not had this problem before, or it seems to be exacerbated, it could be a sign of diabetes. If you notice your loved one having to go to the bathroom more often, or having trouble “holding their water,” this illness could be the culprit.
- Neuropathy – Sometimes, the symptoms of Type 2 diabetes in seniors goes unnoticed for so long that the disease is not identified until the sufferer is experiencing diabetes complications, such as neuropathy. Neuropathy occurs when the nerves in the hands, feet, or even face become damaged, and don’t work the way that they should. If your senior has reported any tingling in these body parts or others, or if they seem to have trouble moving their limbs or face, then it is time to consult a physician to see if diabetes could be the cause.
Although it certainly sounds scary, Type 2 diabetes, unlike Type 1, can be managed (or in some cases even cured) with diet changes, exercise, and medication. If your loved one has any of the above symptoms, try to schedule a doctor’s appointment as soon as possible. The sooner you identify the problem, the easier it is to treat, and the sooner your senior will feel better.
If you or an aging loved one are considering senior care in Tempe, AZ, contact the caring staff at Assisting Hands Home Care at (480) 725-7002.