ZocdocAnswersDo diabetics need more sleep?

Question

Do diabetics need more sleep?

I feel very tired all the time. Could it be my diabetes? I was diagnosed last year and am now 22.

Answer

Feeling tired is a very common complaint. There are many potential causes of this, some of which are serious. I would recommend to see your primary care doctor to have this (as well as your diabetes) evaluated. To answer your question: YES -- fatigue can be a symptom of diabetes. Diabetes mellitus is a problem with the body's ability to utilize its sugar. Because the body can't remove the sugar from the blood and use it, there is excess sugar in the blood that can eventually be wasted (peed out in the urine). Therefore, poorly controlled diabetes can result in fatigue. That being said, if your diabetes is well controlled, it should not cause fatigue as there should be relatively normal sugar utilization. Diabetes is an autoimmune disorder. As such, patients are at risk for other autoimmune disorders. On that is common is autoimmune thyroid problems -- such as low thyroid levels. This often causes fatigue and should be evaluated by your doctor. Other causes of fatigue should be ruled out. Low blood levels or anemia are common. Depression is actually the most common cause of need for increased sleep. These should be evaluated. Talk to your doctor. Your diabetes control as well as other causes of fatigue should be evaluated.

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