Key Points About Hyperglycaemia
|Seek urgent medical advice if you have high blood glucose and experience the following symptoms:|
These symptoms could be a sign of more serious complications of hyperglycaemia, such as diabetic ketoacidosis or a hyperosmolar hyperglycaemic state, and you may need to be looked after in hospital.
You Have Noticeably Blurry Vision And Frequent Headaches
You may notice that your vision isnt as clear as it used to be and that things may appear a bit blurry. High blood sugar levels can lead to swollen lenses in your eye from fluid leaking in, according to the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston. This changes the shape of the lens, which makes it unable to properly focus, causing blurred vision. You may also find yourself struggling at work, having difficulty driving, and suffering from frequent headaches, Emanuele notes.
Planning For Sick Days
Your body releases stress hormones when you are sick, which can cause hyperglycemia. Keep taking your insulin and other diabetes medications, even if you are throwing up. If you have ketones and your blood sugar is above 240 mg/dL, call your doctor. They might also want you to call if:
- You have diarrhea that lasts more than 6 hours
- You are throwing up
- You have a high fever or trouble breathing
- You feel very sleepy or confused
Continue checking your blood sugar levels and keep track of the results.
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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.
Elevated Blood Sugar Levels And Cardiovascular Disease
Evidence suggests that type 2 diabetes confers a stronger excess risk of cardiovascular diseases in women than in men with women having a 27% higher relative risk of stroke and a 44% higher relative risk of coronary heart disease compared with men.
Women are also at higher risk of other diabetes-related complications such as blindness and kidney disease.
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Can Drinking A Lot Of Water Lower Your Blood Sugar Levels
Although feeling very thirsty is a symptom of a hyper, drinking a lot of water will not bring your blood sugar levels down. It will only help to reduce your risk of dehydration.
Its important that you take your diabetes medication to bring your blood sugar levels down. If you have consistently high blood sugar levels, you will need to follow the advice below and speak to your diabetes healthcare team.
Increased Risk Of Cardiovascular Events
Cardiovascular events such as heart attack and stroke are common and affect millions of people around the globe. According to the CDC, every year, about 735,000 Americans have a heart attack. Of the total number of heart attacks, about 525,000 are a first cardiovascular event of this kind while 210,000 occur in people who have already had a heart attack.
On the other hand, stroke is the third leading cause of death in the US. About 140,000 die each year due to stroke. Every year, around 795,000 people suffer a stroke, and nearly three-quarters happen in people older than 65.
Risk factors that lead to cardiovascular problems are numerous, and high blood sugar is one of them. Although evidence on this subject is still relatively scarce, preliminary findings do show that hyperglycemia is an important prognostic factor in acute heart failure.
Studies show that hyperglycemia could increase the risk of heart attack and stroke due to the fact that glucose fluctuations are triggers for inflammatory responses through enhanced mitochondrial superoxide production.
The biggest problem here is that an inflammatory response induced by one short-term episode of hyperglycemia may last for several days. As if the problem isnt severe enough, inflammation leads to insulin resistance, which only worsens hyperglycemia. Basically, a vicious circle is created.
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Causes Of High Blood Sugar
You must rein in your blood sugar if you have Type 2 diabetes. Not doing so will lead to a potentially fatal condition known as the hyperglycemic hyperosmolar nonketotic syndrome , when your body cannot process blood sugar any longer. You may be unable to urinate because you are completely dehydrated.
To avoid hyperglycemia, you must know its causes. Your blood sugar may spike if you miss your insulin injections or eat too many carbohydrates. You may also develop hyperglycemia if you are ill, under stress or do not exercise enough.
How Does High Blood Sugar Affect The Body
High sugar in the blood can lead to a number of other symptoms and complications. Here are just a few.
Urination and thirst: High blood sugar goes into the kidneys and urine. This attracts more water, causing frequent urination. This can also lead to increased thirst, despite drinking enough liquids.
Weight loss: High blood sugar can cause sudden or unexplained weight loss. This occurs because the bodys cells are not getting the glucose they need, so the body burns muscle and fat for energy instead.
Numbness and tingling: High blood sugar can also cause numbness, burning, or tingling in the hands, legs, and feet. This is due to diabetic neuropathy, a complication of diabetes that often occurs after many years of high blood sugar levels.
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How Do I Prevent Hyperglycemia
- Exercise to help lower blood sugar. Work with your healthcare provider to make a daily activity plan.
- Follow your meal plan if you have one. Learn how carbohydrates impact your blood sugar, and work with your diabetes care team to find the best meal plan for you.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Dont smoke.
- Limit drinking alcohol. Alcohol can raise blood sugar levels, but can also cause dangerously low blood sugar levels. Work with your provider to determine how much is safe to drink.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 02/11/2020.
Don’t Use Your Feet To Test Hot Water
When people with diabetes develop nerve damage, or neuropathy, it can be hard to tell if bath water is too hot. They wont realize they are actually scalding their skin, explains Dr. Tillett. Stepping into a bath before checking the temperature can cause serious damage to your feet, since burns and blisters are open doors to infection. Use your elbow to check the water temperature before getting into the tub or shower.
Your Legs And Feet Are Swollen
When there’s too much sugar in the system, it can pull water into cells, which will swell up over time if you don’t get these fluids moving through your body regularly.
The American Diabetes Association claims that people who have diabetes tend to have legs and feet up to five times larger than they should be, which can lead to complications within the circulatory system, including infections and reduced blood flow.
If you notice your feet and ankles begin to swell up, make sure to keep them elevated when possible. It’s important to treat swelling as soon as possible by elevating your legs higher.
Glucose Changes During The Menstrual Cycle
Hormonal changes in your menstrual cycle can make blood sugar levels more difficult to control.
Roughly halfway through your menstrual cycle, ovulation occurs. At that point in your cycle, your progesterone levels increase. Studies have shown that progesterone is associated with increased insulin resistance.
That means that during the second half of your cycle after ovulation when your progesterone levels are naturally higher you will have some relative insulin resistance and may have a tendency towards hyperglycemia.
Women with type 1 diabetes may be more sensitive to this menstrual cycle-related insulin resistance.
Research shows the risk for hyperglycemia changes significantly during the cycle for women with type 1 diabetes, with high blood glucose indices increasing until the early luteal phase and returning to initial levels thereafter.
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What Causes High Blood Sugar Levels
Managing diabetes is like a three-way balancing act because you have to watch:
All three need to be balanced. If any one of these is off, blood sugar levels can be too. In general, higher than normal blood glucose levels can be caused by:
- not taking your diabetes medicine when you’re supposed to or not taking the right amounts
- not following the meal plan
- not getting enough exercise
- having an illness, like the flu
- taking other kinds of medicines that affect how your diabetes medicines work
A single high blood sugar reading usually isn’t cause for alarm it happens to everyone with diabetes from time to time. But if you have high blood sugar levels a lot, let your parents and your diabetes health care team know. Insulin or meal plans may need adjusting, or you may have an equipment issue, like an insulin pump that isn’t working right. Whatever the case, make sure you get help so you can get your blood sugar levels back under control.
Stabilize And Relieve Feet With Orthotic Shoes
Because wearing correct shoes is so important, orthotic footwear is a great investment in protection and comfort. Shoes made especially for people with diabetes are available at specialty stores and online, or you can visit your podiatrist for advice. Medicare Part B will cover one pair of extra-depth or custom-molded diabetic shoes a year, plus additional inserts to reduce pressure on your feet. Your doctor may recommend these shoes to you if you have an ulcer or sore that is not healing.
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Symptoms When Your Blood Sugar Levels Are Too High
Hyperglycemia is difficult to detect if you dont pay close enough attention, but there are always symptoms. The best thing to do is to have a medical examination every 6 months in order to have your doctor monitor any changes occurring in your body.
A blood sugar test is normally very cheap and simple. A small amount of blood will be taken and checked. As for the symptoms you need to watch out for, here is a list:
Pearls And Other Issues
Patients with severe hyperglycemia should be assessed for clinical stability including mentation and hydration. Diabetic ketoacidosis and hyperglycemic hyperosmolar state are acute, severe disorders related to hyperglycemia.
Patients confirmed with type 2 diabetes are faced with a life-long challenge to maintain euglycemia. This is not an easy undertaking and is also prohibitively expensive. Patients must be educated that making changes in their lifestyle can markedly improve their prognosis.
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How Do I Check For Ketones
There are two ways to check for ketones:
- Step 7
Ketone strip storage
- Keep ketone strips at room temperature between 59° and 86° F. Keep them out of direct sunlight.
- Step 8 After opening the first time, write the date on the bottle.
- Always put the lid back on right away after opening.
- Do not keep them in the bathroom because the moisture could ruin the strips.
- Throw the ketone strips away 6 months after first opening if they are not gone.
- Do not use them after the expiration date. Call your pharmacy for a refill.
Steps to check for blood ketones:
The Power Of Consistency
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Controlled Means Different Things To Different People
Theres no one-size-fits-all recommendation for blood sugar control.
The ADA says that a reasonable goal for many nonpregnant adults is to aim for an A1C level of less than 7. Yet some patients may be given a more stringent goal by their healthcare providers, such as 6.5, if thats reachable without harmful side effects, including hypoglycemia.
On the other hand, if you are elderly, managing other health complications, or reliant on insulin, you may be given less stringent goals. It really becomes more important to just keep in the same place, says Rahil Bandukwala, DO, an endocrinologist at MemorialCare Saddleback Medical Center in Laguna Hills, California. Keeping A1C between 7.5 and 8.5 may be very reasonable for such a patient, Dr. Bandukwala adds, echoing the ADAs recommendations.
Because elderly people are more likely to have blood sugar that swings too far downward, with fewer warning signs, managing their glucose too tightly can put them at greater risk for hypoglycemia, says Bandukwala. When you have low blood sugar, youre at a higher risk for becoming dizzy and falling or passing out, notes the ADA.
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What Is High Blood Sugar
High blood sugar occurs when theres a buildup of excess glucose in the bloodstream. This is more often a concern for someone with diabetes than it is for someone without it. Our bodies are typically pretty great at keeping our blood sugar in perfect balance, Deena Adimoolam, M.D., assistant professor of endocrinology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, tells SELF. But in some situations, like when a person has diabetes, high blood sugar can happen.
Blood sugar is measured in milligrams per deciliter , and a fasting blood sugar of greater than 125 mg/dL is considered hyperglycemic, the Cleveland Clinic says. A person can also be considered to have hyperglycemia if their blood glucose level is higher than 180 mg/dL one to two hours after eating, the Cleveland Clinic says.
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Why Do These Symptoms Matter For Diabetics
These symptoms are essential for diabetics to understand, because they may encounter high or low blood sugar levels from time to time.
A cold or virus can cause sudden high blood sugar levels, and understand the symptoms means knowing how to deal with hyperglycemia or hypoglycemia.
People with diabetes who can recognise the symptoms can avoid levels that lead to medical emergencies such as diabetic ketoacidosis
Go Easy On Your Feet With Low
People with diabetes benefit from exercise, but what is the best kind? While exercise for diabetes certainly isn’t one-size-fits all, be mindful that many fitness classes and aerobics programs include bouncing, jumping, and leaping, which may not be good for your feet. This is especially true if you have neuropathy. Instead, look into programs, such as walking or swimming, that dont put too much pressure on your feet. Just make sure you have the right shoe for whatever activity you choose.
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Yeast Infections Sneak Up More Often
Everyday Health explains that hyperglycemia may be a root cause of a yeast infection. The culprit, says the source, is a yeast known as Candida albicans that can cause itching, redness, soreness, and pain.
It says having extra glucose in the blood is not ideal, because this yeast uses glucose as a source of food. It also notes, high blood sugar leaves behind more glucose in the urinary tract which can be made worse by medications known as SGLT-2 inhibitors.