Many people have type 2 diabetes and don't know it. Learn how to recognize the symptoms, and find out what causes them.

1. Being more thirsty than usual and urinating more often: Blood sugar buildup pulls fluid out of your tissues, which can make you thirsty. Drinking more leads to more frequent urination.

2. Being hungrier than usual: When insulin can’t move sugar into the muscle and organ cells, they become “starved” for energy, making you feel starved, too.

3. Weight loss: You may be losing weight even though you’re eating more.The excess glucose your body can’t use—along with the calories it represents—are eliminated in your urine instead of contributing to your body weight.

4. Feeling more tired and/or irritable than usual: This can happen when your body doesn’t have enough sugar for energy.

5. Blurry vision: High blood sugar levels can pull fluid from the lenses in your eyes so you can’t focus clearly.

6. Slow healing and/or frequent infections: Type 2 diabetes can cause immune system deficiency, making it harder to fight infections.

7. Patches of dark, velvety skin (called acanthosis nigricans) in body creases and folds, most often in the neck and armpits: This condition is often caused by obesity, which is commonly associated with type 2 diabetes.

If you have any of these symptoms and haven’t been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, see your doctor. Type 2 diabetes develops most often in adults; however, with childhood obesity on the rise, it is becoming more common in children.

Type 2 diabetes can’t be cured, but eating well, exercising, and maintaining a healthy weight can help keep it under control. If these lifestyle choices aren’t enough, you may need to add diabetes medications and/or insulin treatment to your disease management program.