Hypoglycemia And Low Blood Sugar
What are the symptoms of hypoglycemia? While each child may experience symptoms of hypoglycemia differently, the most common include: shakiness dizziness sweating hunger headache irritability pale skin color sudden moodiness or behavior changes, such as crying for no apparent reason clumsy or jerky movements difficulty paying attention or confusion What causes hypoglycemia? The vast majority of episodes of hypoglycemia in children and adolescents occur when a child with diabetes takes too much insulin, eats too little, or exercises strenuously or for a prolonged period of time. For young children who do not have diabetes, hypoglycemia may be caused by: Single episodes: Stomach flu, or another illness that may cause them to not eat enough fasting for a prolonged period of time prolonged strenuous exercise and lack of food Recurrent episodes: accelerated starvation, also known as ketotic hypoglycemia, a tendency for children without diabetes, or any other known cause of hypoglycemia, to experience repeated hypoglycemic episodes. medications your child may be taking a congenital error in metabolism or unusual disorder such as hypopituitarism or hyperinsulinism.Continue reading > >
How Can I Prevent Hypoglycemia
You may need to change what and when you eat to prevent low blood sugar levels. Follow the meal plan that you and the dietitian have planned. The following guidelines may help you keep your blood sugar levels under control.
- Eat 5 to 6 small meals each day instead of 3 large meals. Eat the same amount of carbohydrate at meals and snacks each day. Most people need about 3 to 4 servings of carbohydrate at meals and 1 to 2 servings for snacks. Do not skip meals. Carbohydrate counting can be used plan your meals. Ask your healthcare provider or dietitian for information about carbohydrate counting.
- Limit refined carbohydrates. Examples are white bread, pastries , regular sodas, syrups, and candy.
- Do not have drinks or foods that contain caffeine. Examples are coffee, tea, and certain types of sodas. Caffeine may cause you to have the same symptoms as hypoglycemia, and may cause you to feel worse.
- Limit or do not drink alcohol. Women should limit alcohol to 1 drink a day. Men should limit alcohol to 2 drinks a day. A drink of alcohol is 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1Â½ ounces of liquor. Do not drink alcohol on an empty stomach. Drink alcohol with meals to avoid hypoglycemia.
- Include protein foods and vegetables in your meals. Some foods that are high in protein include beef, pork, fish, poultry , beans, and nuts. Eat a variety of vegetables with your meals.
You May Like: High Blood Sugar What To Do
Low Blood Sugar Chart And Action Plan
Low blood sugar is also called hypoglycemia. The numbers below represent values in the hypoglycemic range and require action to bring blood sugar levels up into a normal range.
|Alert Level and Treatment Plan|
|50 mg/dL or under||Red Flag: Blood sugar is critically low and requires immediate treatment.
If a person is unable to speak and/or is not alert, treat with glucagon via injection or nasal spray. Call emergency medical response if necessary. Do not place food or drink into the mouth.
If a person is alert and able to speak clearly, treat with 15 grams of rapid-acting carbohydrate such as glucose gel, 4 oz regular soda, or fruit juice. Re-test blood sugar in 15 minutes and repeat as needed to bring blood sugar within range.
|51-70 mg/dL||Red Flag: Blood sugar is below normal levels and requires immediate treatment.
Treat with 15 grams of rapid-acting carbohydrate and re-test in 15 minutes. Repeat treatment as needed to bring blood sugar within range.
|71-90 mg/dL||Yellow Flag: Blood sugar levels should be watched and treated as needed.
If youre having symptoms of low blood sugar, treat with 15 grams of rapid-acting carbohydrate and re-test in 15 minutes.
Repeat treatment or follow with a meal. If it is meal time, move forward with eating the meal. People often fall into this range when they are late for a meal or have been especially active.
Also Check: Whether Banana Is Good For Diabetes
How To Get Your Blood Sugar Up
A quick way to do it is the 15-15 rule:
But donât eat too much — That could send your blood sugar sky-high. Stick with repeat doses of 15 grams until youâre back to normal.
If your blood sugarâs very low or the 15-15 method doesnât work, you may need a shot of glucagon. This is a hormone your body makes that raises your blood sugar fast. Ask your doctor if you should have a glucagon rescue kit on hand. Be sure the people in your life know how to use it if you faint.
Tell your diabetes team any time you have low blood sugar, especially if itâs serious. They can suggest things to do so it doesnât happen as often.
What Is Blood Sugar
When you eat, the carbohydrate in your food is broken down into a usable form of energy called glucose. Glucose also known as sugar enters the bloodstream and a hormone called insulin helps move it into our cells.
This process lowers the amount of glucose in the bloodstream. When this process works efficiently, your muscles and organs have the fuel they need without there being too much glucose remaining in the blood.
Read Also: Banana Bad For Diabetes
You’re Noticing Skin Tags And Other Skin Issues
Skin tags and other skin issues can be a sign that something is wrong with your blood glucose levels. People with diabetes frequently have to deal with these types of things because high glucose levels affect the way cells produce collagen, making it difficult for the body to heal itself properly after an injury or wound occurs.
In addition, high glucose levels can cause blood vessels to become damaged, which leads to skin issues such as spider veins and rosacea. It’s important that you make sure you’re getting enough Vitamin A in your meal plan, so the body has what it needs to keep itself strong and healthy.
Managing Blood Sugar Levels
Many people with diabetes must check their blood sugar levels daily with a glucose meter. This device takes a drop of blood, usually from a finger, and displays the sugar level within a few seconds.
People with type 1 diabetes will need to take insulin as their doctor recommends, usually several times a day.
Those with type 2 diabetes or gestational diabetes may need to change their diet and exercise habits. They may also need to take oral medications or insulin.
A number of strategies can help prevent hyperglycemia.
- check their blood sugar levels as their doctor advises and take the correct amount of insulin, if they have type 1 diabetes
- speak to their healthcare provider or dietitian about which foods to eat or avoid, how much to eat, and how often
- take precautions to avoid infections, for example, through regular hand washing, as illness, such as a cold, can trigger a rise in blood pressure
- plan their food intake and exercise to balance blood sugar levels
- minimize stress, as far as possible, for example, through exercise, getting enough sleep, and stress-reducing activities such as meditation or yoga
Low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia, can happen when a person:
- has certain medical conditions
- does a lot of exercise
- skips meals or eats too little
It can also be a side effect of diabetes medicines. Taking too much insulin can result in low blood sugar levels.
Symptoms of low blood sugar may include:
- visit a doctor regularly
Don’t Miss: How To Control Pp Sugar
Reversing Hypoglycemia Unawareness Is Possible For Many
While it isnt remarkably common, it is an issue for some people with diabetes. There are a few things someone with clear hypoglycemia unawareness can do to keep themselves safe.
First, use a continuous glucose monitor . CGMs are ideal for people who dont experience normal symptoms of low blood sugar because they can alert you to oncoming lows, helping you prevent them from occurring or from dropping as severely. CGMs allow you to set low alerts to levels like 90 mg/dL or 110 mg/dL wherever you feel safest.
Secondly, aim for a higher target range. If you know you have hypoglycemia unawareness, its critical that you raise your target blood sugar range at least slightly. Instead of aiming for 90 mg/dL when dosing insulin for meals and correcting highs, talk to your diabetes healthcare team about aiming for 100 mg/dL or 110 mg/dL, etc. This will reduce the risk of low blood sugars by keeping your blood sugar slightly above that thin line between normal and low.
Read Also: Sugar Tablet Before Or After Food
Why Your Blood Sugar Level May Be High
Based on the ADA guidelines above, if your blood sugar is above 180 mg/dL two hours after a meal, it is considered above the normal range. What might cause your glucose or blood sugar to rise? Consider the following factors:
- Consuming more carbohydrates or a larger meal than usual
- Not taking enough insulin or oral diabetes medication based on carbohydrates or activity levels
- Reduced physical activity
- Side effects from medications like steroids or antipsychotics
Recommended Reading: How To Come Sugar Disease
You’re Feeling Anxious And Irritable
This typically shows up as a result of changes in hormone levels within your body which the extra glucose in your body can cause.
Low serotonin levels are often responsible for feelings like this, so if you notice yourself becoming more emotional than usual, it could also mean something is wrong with your insulin balance even though it’s not always easy to tell what these changes will lead to at first because they happen gradually over time.
People who have diabetes tend to experience mood disorders such as depression and anxiety much more frequently than those who do not and other mental health issues, including memory loss and further cognitive declines.
Blood Sugar Levels And Exercise
You can keep your blood sugar levels under control when you exercise, so that you do not become too hungry or make your blood sugar level drop. There are two ways to keep your blood sugar levels under control:
Keep a quick-sugar food with you during exercise in case your blood sugar level drops low.
You May Like: High Blood Sugar What To Do
What To Do If You Have Low Blood Sugar Symptoms
If you have diabetes and are experiencing mild to moderate hypoglycemia symptoms, you need to immediately eat or drink 15 grams of easily digestible carbohydrates.
Very low blood sugar is a medical emergency. If you or someone else with diabetes is experiencing severe symptoms, such as unconsciousness, its important to administer a medication called glucagon and contact emergency services immediately.
If youre at risk for low blood sugar, its important to talk with your doctor about getting a prescription for glucagon.
You should never give an unconscious person anything by mouth, as it could cause them to choke. If you have diabetes, make sure your family and friends know not to do this if you lose consciousness.
Low blood sugar can occur for a number of reasons. Its usually a side effect of diabetes treatment.
How To Prevent Hyperglycemia With And Without Diabetes
If you dont have diabetes, you can prevent hyperglycemia with regular physical activity. Aim for 30 minutes at least 5 days per week.
Maintaining a healthy weight also keeps blood sugar within a safe range. This includes eating fewer refined carbohydrates, and eating more fresh fruits and vegetables.
If you have diabetes, always take your medication as directed. You can talk with your doctor, a diabetes educator, or a dietitian about healthy diabetes meal plans. You should also regularly monitor your blood sugar.
If youre thinking about starting a new exercise routine, talk with your doctor first. They may need to adjust your medication.
You May Like: Reduce Sugar Level Immediately
Why Does Blood Sugar Go Up And Down
When we eat, carbohydrates break down into sugar molecules, including glucose. Glucose fuels our bodies, but it needs to get into the cells to do it. Insulin is a hormone that unlocks the cells so glucose can get in. When insulin doesn’t work as it should, glucose will stay in the blood. This creates high blood sugar, known as hyperglycemia.
Blood sugar can also go too low. This is a condition known as hypoglycemia. This usually happens when you go too long without eating. It can also happen when those with diabetes take too much medication. A few other conditions can cause hypoglycemia, but they are relatively rare. Hyperglycemia and diabetes are much greater problems than hypoglycemia.
Monitoring And Controlling Blood Sugar Levels
Use home blood sugar tests to determine whether your blood sugar is in your target range. Work with your doctor to set your individual treatment goals. If you can consistently maintain this level of control, you will have very few blood sugar level emergencies.
Recommended Reading: How To Reduce Diabetes Instantly
Moderate To Severe High Blood Sugar
If your blood sugar levels are consistently high , you may have moderate to severe symptoms of high blood sugar. These symptoms include:
- Blurred vision.
- Flushed, hot, dry skin.
- Restlessness, drowsiness, or difficulty waking up.
If your body produces little or no insulin , you also may have:
- Rapid, deep breathing.
- A fast heart rate and a weak pulse.
- A strong, fruity breath odor.
- Loss of appetite, belly pain, and/or vomiting.
If your blood sugar levels continue to rise, you may become confused and lethargic. You also may become unconscious if your blood sugar levels are very high.
Risk Factors For High Blood Sugar
Doctors do not know exactly what causes diabetes. Some factors may increase the risk, however.
Type 1 diabetes
Researchers believe certain genetic or environmental factors may make people more likely to get type 1 diabetes.
The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases say certain genes play a role, and other factors such as viruses and infections may have an impact.
The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation say that there is nothing a person can do to prevent type 1 diabetes. Eating, exercise, or other lifestyle choices will not change the outcome.
Type 1 diabetes usually begins during childhood or early adulthood, but it can happen at any age.
Type 2 diabetes
People who have high blood sugar should discuss their target levels with their doctor.
They may need regular testing to keep these within a healthy range. Each person is different and levels can vary between individuals.
To find out their blood sugar levels, the person may need to fast for 8 hours, 2 hours after a meal, or at both times.
Some people may also take a glucose tolerance test, in which they drink a sugary liquid and have a blood test after.
The American Diabetes Association recommend a pre-meal blood sugar level of 80130 milligrams per deciliter . Around 1 to 2 hours after the beginning of a meal, blood sugar should be less than 180 ml/dL.
Also Check: Sugar Tablets Side Effects
Symptoms Of A Low Blood Sugar Level
A low blood sugar level can affect everyone differently. You’ll learn how it makes you feel, although your symptoms may change over time.
Early signs of a low blood sugar level include:
- a fast or pounding heartbeat
- becoming easily irritated, tearful, anxious or moody
- turning pale
If a low blood sugar level is not treated, you may get other symptoms, such as:
- unusual behaviour, slurred speech or clumsiness
- feeling sleepy
- seizures or fits
- collapsing or passing out
A low blood sugar level, or hypo, can also happen while you’re sleeping. This may cause you to wake up during the night or cause headaches, tiredness or damp sheets in the morning.
How Can I Prevent Low Blood Sugar
Your best bet is to practice good diabetes management and learn to detect hypoglycemia so you can treat it earlybefore it gets worse.
Monitoring blood sugar, with either a meter or a CGM, is the tried and true method for preventing hypoglycemia. Studies consistently show that the more a person checks blood sugar, the lower his or her risk of hypoglycemia. This is because you can see when blood sugar levels are dropping and can treat it before it gets too low.
If you can, check often!
- Check before and after meals.
- Check before and after exercise .
- Check before bed.
- After intense exercise, also check in the middle of the night.
- Check more if things around you change such as, a new insulin routine, a different work schedule, an increase in physical activity, or travel across time zones.
You May Like: Reduce Sugar Level Instantly
Symptoms Of Blood Blood Sugar Levels
Symptoms of blood sugar levels differ depending on if it is high or low. To determine which way the blood sugar have moved, the symptoms for each are typically:
|High Blood Sugar Symptoms|
|Slow healing wounds||Turning pale|
If symptoms are left untreated, more extreme circumstances can happen such as fainting, weakness, disorientation, vomiting and dehydration. When you notice symptoms, usually more than one at one time, it is advised to see a doctor right away.
It is important to get the right treatment so that you can return to a healthy normal blood sugar level and inhibit it from occurring again.
Treatment methods vary from the severity of the blood sugar level, whether it is high or low and if the patient has existing medical conditions, such as diabetes. Here are ways in which blood sugar levels can be treated: