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Signs & Symptoms of High Sugar Level in the Blood

by
author image Anna Aronson
Anna Aronson began working as a journalist in 2000 and spent six years at suburban Chicago newspapers before pursuing freelance work. She enjoys writing about health care topics, in particular obstetrics, pediatrics and nutrition. She received a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Eastern Illinois University and is now studying for a Master of Science in medicine degree to become a physician's assistant.
Signs & Symptoms of High Sugar Level in the Blood
You can determine your blood sugar with a simple test. Photo Credit Wavebreakmedia Ltd/Wavebreak Media/Getty Images

Overview

Glucose--or blood sugar--is the main source of energy in the human body. When blood sugar levels are too high, it is a sign your body is not using the sugar properly, according to the National Library of Medicine. A high blood sugar level, called hyperglycemia, often develops in people who have diabetes, although it can develop independent of that condition as well. Your blood sugar level can be determined with a simple blood test. Knowing the signs and symptoms of a high sugar level in the blood may help you head off any potential health problems that could result.

Excessive Hunger

Signs & Symptoms of High Sugar Level in the Blood
Excessive hunger is a sign of a high blood sugar level. Photo Credit Chris Clinton/Photodisc/Getty Images

Excessive hunger is often a sign of a high blood sugar level, according to the American Diabetes Association. People with hyperglycemia may be constantly or frequently hungry despite eating regularly.

Increased Thirst and Urination

Signs & Symptoms of High Sugar Level in the Blood
An increased thirst is another sign that your blood sugar level is too high. Photo Credit -101PHOTO-/iStock/Getty Images

An excessive thirst that is difficult to quench is another sign that your blood sugar level is too high, according to the Joslin Diabetes Center at Harvard University. You may constantly be thirsty despite an adequate fluid intake. In conjunction, you may also notice an increase in your urine output.

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Dry Mouth

Signs & Symptoms of High Sugar Level in the Blood
A dry mouth can make you feel thirsty. Photo Credit malyugin/iStock/Getty Images

When blood sugar levels are too high, you can also develop a dry mouth, Joslin Diabetes Center reports. A dry mouth can contribute to the feeling of always being thirsty and can persist despite proper fluid intake.

Slow-Healing Wounds

Signs & Symptoms of High Sugar Level in the Blood
If your cuts and scrapes are healing slower than they used to, you may have hyperglycemia. Photo Credit Ruslan Nassyrov/Hemera/Getty Images

A person with hyperglycemia may notice that minor cuts, scrapes and other skin wounds are healing more slowly than they once would have, according to the National Library of Medicine.

Frequent Infections

Signs & Symptoms of High Sugar Level in the Blood
A high blood sugar level can also cause a person to be sick more often. Photo Credit Wavebreakmedia Ltd/Wavebreak Media/Getty Images

A high blood sugar level can also cause a person to be sick more often, with frequent and chronic infections, the Joslin Diabetes Center reports.

Weight Loss

Signs & Symptoms of High Sugar Level in the Blood
Weight loss is another symptom of hyperglycemia. Photo Credit Bine Å edivy/iStock/Getty Images

Another sign of hyperglycemia is weight loss, according to the National Library of Medicine. Weight loss can occur despite a healthy or even an above-average appetite, which can also result when blood sugar levels are high.

Ketoacidosis

Signs & Symptoms of High Sugar Level in the Blood
Ketoacidosis can cause you to feel nauseous and is potentially life threatening. Photo Credit LarsZahnerPhotography/iStock/Getty Images

In severe cases, your blood sugar level can become so high that a serious condition called ketoacidosis can develop, according to the McKinley Health Center at the University of Illinois. Symptoms of the condition include fruity-smelling breath, an extremely dry mouth, nausea and vomiting, and shortness of breath. Ketoacidosis is a potentially life-threatening condition requiring immediate medical attention.

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