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5 Warning Signs of Prediabetes in the Elderly

Identifying prediabetes in seniors is important for preventing it from progressing to type 2 diabetes. In the early stages, prediabetes can mimic other disorders and have mild symptoms that are easy to overlook. Being aware of the symptoms of prediabetes allows family caregivers to take prompt action to protect their senior loved ones’ health.

 Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality non-medical senior care. Georgetown families trust in Home Care Assistance to help their elderly loved ones age in place safely and comfortably.

1. Blurry Vision

Fluctuations in blood sugar levels can affect a senior’s vision and lead to general blurriness, trouble focusing, and other issues. When this occurs, seniors will need to omit sugary foods from their diet, and include proteins such as nuts, lean meat, and seeds.

2. Increased Thirst

A senior’s body gets rid of the extra glucose by making more urine, which could lead to dehydration. Make sure your senior loved one avoids sugary drinks such as soda and alcohol that can raise blood sugar levels and increase dehydration. Seniors should instead drink plenty of water to rehydrate their bodies.

3. Slower Healing Times

High blood sugar levels also affect a senior’s ability to heal. The risk of infection increases when minor wounds do not heal. Seniors in the prediabetes stage sometimes mistake slower healing times as a sign of normal aging. However, it is not normal for a minor wound such as a paper cut to turn into a festering sore weeks later.

4. Extreme Fatigue

Prediabetes may cause insulin resistance in aging adults. When this happens, the body is no longer able to turn glucose into energy, which can make seniors feel extremely tired. To stave off fatigue, your aging loved one may need to monitor his or her glucose levels throughout the day and make changes to his or her diet and exercise routine.

Families who find it difficult to care for their aging loved ones without assistance can benefit greatly from professional respite care. Georgetown, South Carolina, family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties can turn to Home Care Assistance. Using our proprietary Balanced Care Method, our respite caregivers can encourage your loved one to eat well, exercise regularly, get plenty of mental and social stimulation, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity.

5. Unexplained Weight Gain or Loss

Many seniors would love to lose a few pounds without even trying. However, getting thinner combined with these other symptoms could point to prediabetes. A senior’s body will begin to burn fat to combat the lack of energy that comes from blood glucose. Alternatively, seniors may gain weight if they experience hunger in response to low blood sugar levels. Following a well-balanced diet and exercise plan could help your loved one control his or her weight and reverse prediabetes in its early stages.

According to the latest research, high insulin or blood sugar levels can harm the brain in several ways and increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s. Aging adults with Alzheimer’s disease can benefit from receiving professional Alzheimer’s care. Georgetown seniors need regular mental stimulation when managing memory-related conditions, and a reliable in-home caregiver who has extensive training in Alzheimer’s care can be a great asset. For more information and to schedule a free consultation, please call Home Care Assistance at (843) 353-3105 today.