Friday, December 2, 2022

When Your Blood Sugar Drops

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S For Treating A Person With Symptoms Keeping Them From Being Able To Treat Themselves

Blood Glucose Drops & Fasting Diet
  • If the glucagon is injectable, inject it into the buttock, arm or thigh, following the instructions in the kit. If your glucagon is inhalable, follow the instructions on the package to administer it into the nostril.
  • When the person regains consciousness , they may experience nausea and vomiting.
  • Dont hesitate to call 911. If someone is unconscious and glucagon is not available or someone does not know how to use it, call 911 immediately.

    Do NOT:

    • Inject insulin
    • Provide food or fluids

    Symptoms Of Low Blood Sugar

    How you react to low blood sugar may not be the same as how someone else with low blood sugar reacts. Its important to know your signs. Common symptoms may include:

    • Fast heartbeat
    • Hunger

    If youve had low blood sugar without feeling or noticing symptoms , you may need to check your blood sugar more often to see if its low and treat it. Driving with low blood sugar can be dangerous, so be sure to check your blood sugar before you get behind the wheel.

    You may not have any symptoms when your blood sugar is low . If you dont have symptoms, it will be harder to treat your low blood sugar early. This increases your risk of having severe lows and can be dangerous. This is more likely to happen if you:

    • Have had diabetes for more than 5-10 years.
    • Frequently have low blood sugar.
    • Take certain medicines, such as beta blockers for high blood pressure.

    If you meet one or more of the above and you have hypoglycemia unawareness, you may need to check your blood sugar more often to see if its low. This is very important to do before driving or being physically active.

    Stages Of Low Blood Sugar

    You will notice certain signs when your blood sugar begins to drop. These signs arise in stages, ranging from mild to moderate to severe. Each stage is characterized by a specific set of symptoms.

    Nausea is one of the signs that occur in the mild stage, but it can also be present in later stages. Many organizations like the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases combine the mild and moderate stages into one.

    Other signs of mild to moderate low blood sugar include:

    • Blurred vision

    Signs of severe low blood sugar include:

    • Unable to eat or drink
    • Seizures or convulsions

    Symptoms of hypoglycemia during sleep include:

    • Crying out or having nightmares
    • Sweating enough to make your pajamas or sheets damp
    • Feeling tired, irritable, or confused after waking up

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    Who Is Most At Risk For Hypoglycemia

    Aside from people with diabetes, Dr. Jennifer Shine Dyer notes that children are more prone toexperience episodes of hypoglycemia because of their smaller body size, as well as having less fat to burn to maintain energy when glucose levels are low. Eating meals every 4 to 6 hours should maintain glucose levels if this is the only cause of hypoglycemia, she says.

    How To Deal With Low Blood Sugar

    Causes and Symptoms of Drop in Blood Sugar Levels » WellnessGuru.net

    The American Diabetes Association recommends the 15-15 rule to treat hypoglycemia. The rule says to have 15 grams of fast-acting carbohydrates to raise your blood sugar and check it after 15 minutes. If the blood sugar is still below 70 mg/dL, have another serving of 15 grams and check again in 15 minutes. Continue doing this until it reaches above the minimum . Three spoons of honey/sugar, a cup of milk and 20 grapes – all of these contain 15gms of carbs each.

    If a child is having a hypoglycemic episode, you can reduce the number of carbs or sugar you give them to 6-8 grams depending on their age: the lower the age the lesser the carbs.

    Avoid complex carbohydrate sources such as wheat bread or foods that have fats along with carbs such as chocolates – both types of foods are absorbed in a slower rate and are therefore not meant for emergency use.

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    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.

    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:

    • sweating
    • 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:

    • weakness
    • 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.

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    Overdose Of Diabetes Medication

    A common cause of hypoglycaemia is taking too much insulin for your current needs. Insulin is a medication that helps control your blood glucose levels. It’s commonly used to treat type 1 diabetes and is also recommended for some people with type 2 diabetes.

    A fall in blood glucose levels can also occur after taking too much oral hypoglycaemia medication, such as sulphonylurea, which causes a release of insulin. This medication is often used to lower blood glucose levels in people with type 2 diabetes.

    Dealing With An Episode

    Here’s How To Drop Your Blood Sugar By 200 Points!

    The symptoms of reactive hypoglycemia can be mitigated by taking certain steps to return blood glucose levels to normal:

    First, follow the “15-15 Rule,” which involves eating 15 grams of fast-acting carbohydrates and checking your blood sugar after 15 minutes. If its still below 70 mg/dL, have another serving.

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    Treating Low Blood Glucose If You Take Medicines That Slow Down Digestion

    Some diabetes medicines slow down the digestion of carbohydrates to keep blood glucose levels from rising too high after you eat. If you develop low blood glucose while taking these medicines, you will need to take glucose tablets or glucose gel right away. Eating or drinking other sources of carbohydrates wont raise your blood glucose level quickly enough.

    Tips To Prevent Blood Sugar From Dropping At Night

    Hypoglycemia, also known as low blood sugar or low blood glucose, occurs when blood glucose levels drop below normalwhich is typically below a level of 70 milligrams per deciliter . With levels more commonly dipping at nighttime, otherwise referred to as nighttime hypoglycemia, this condition affects mostly patients with diabetes.

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    Treating Severely Low Blood Sugar

    Blood sugar below 55 mg/dL is considered severely low. You wont be able to treat it using the 15-15 rule. You also may not be able to check your own blood sugar or treat it by yourself, depending on your symptoms. Make sure your family members, friends, and caregivers know your signs of low blood sugar so they can help treat it if needed.

    Injectable glucagon is the best way to treat severely low blood sugar. A glucagon kit is available by prescription. Speak with your doctor to see if you should have a kit. Be sure to learn how and when to use it. Let family members and others close to you know where you keep the glucagon kit and make sure theyve been trained in how to use it too.

    Its important to contact a doctor for emergency medical treatment immediately after receiving a glucagon injection. If a person faints due to severely low blood sugar, theyll usually wake up within 15 minutes after a glucagon injection. If they dont wake up within 15 minutes after the injection, they should receive one more dose. When the person is awake and able to swallow:

    • Feed the person a fast-acting source of sugar .
    • Then, have them eat a long-acting source of sugar .

    Its also important that friends, family, co-workers, teachers, coaches, and other people you may be around often know how to test your blood sugar and treat severely low blood sugar before it happens.

    If any of the following happens, your friend, relative, or helper should call 911:

    How To Help Others Help You

    What Happens When Your Blood Sugar Drops

    Knowing the signs of low blood sugar, having an action plan, and being prepared with your glucose meter and glucose tablets are vital, but sometimes you might need to rely on other people to help when youre blood sugar drops too low. Take these additional steps so youre prepared and they are, too:

    Teach your loved ones. If youre unable to help yourself, friends, family, or colleagues may need to treat you with an injection of glucagon, a hormone that tells your liver to release stored glucose, the American Diabetes Association says. For this reason, its a good idea to teach those close to you what to do. If they dont know how to give you the injection or if glucagon isnt available, they must call 911 and get you the help you need, Evans says. Low blood sugar thats sustained for a prolonged time can lead to irreversible brain damage, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.

    Wear an ID bracelet. Evan suggests that everyone with diabetes should get a tattoo or wear a medical ID bracelet. The bracelet should say diabetes and whether youre on insulin or take other medications, the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston recommends.

    Talk to your doctor about your low blood sugar risk. If you have frequent bouts of hypoglycemia, be sure to talk with your doctor. The solution may be as simple as changing how much or the kind of diabetes medicine you take. However, never make any changes to your medication regimen without your doctors approval.

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    Low Blood Sugar Levels In Diabetes

    People with diabetes can have low blood sugar levels because of the medicines they have to take to manage their diabetes. They may need a hormone called or diabetes pills to help their bodies use the sugar in their blood.

    These medicines help take the sugar out of the blood and get it into the body’s cells, which makes the blood sugar level go down. But sometimes it’s a tricky balancing act and blood sugar levels can get too low.

    People with diabetes need to keep their blood sugars from getting too highor too low. Keeping blood sugar levels in a healthy range means balancing when and what they eat, and when they exercise with when they take medicines.

    How Do I Treat Low Blood Glucose

    If you begin to feel one or more symptoms of low blood glucose, check your blood glucose level. If your blood glucose level is below your target or less than 70 mg/dL, follow these steps

  • Eat or drink 15 to 20 grams of glucose or carbohydrates right away. Examples include
  • four glucose tablets or one tube of glucose gel.
  • 1/2 cup of fruit juicenot low-calorie or reduced-sugar juice. If you have kidney disease, dont drink orange juice because it has a lot of potassium. Apple, grape, or cranberry juice are good options.
  • 1/2 can of sodanot low-calorie or reduced-sugar soda.
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar, honey, or corn syrup.
  • Wait 15 minutes and check your blood glucose level again. If your glucose level is still low, eat or drink another 15 to 20 grams of glucose or carbohydrates.
  • Check your blood glucose level again after another 15 minutes. Repeat these steps until your glucose level is back to your target range.
  • If your next meal is more than 1 hour away, have a snack to keep your blood glucose level within a range that is healthy for you. Try crackers or a piece of fruit.
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    What If Im Experiencing Hypoglycemic Episodes Even Though My Doctor Has Confirmed That I Dont Have Diabetes Or Prediabetes

    If you have low blood sugar and dont have diabetes or , it can be a sign of another serious health issue such as a tumor, hormone deficiency, kidney disorder, anorexia, or other eating disorder, all of which can cause dangerously low blood sugar.

    Anorexia has an extremely high mortality rate compared with other psychiatric disorders, according to the NIHs National Institute of Mental Health , and the cause of death can be hypoglycemia. So take your illness seriously and seek help if you suspect your eating disorder may be progressing to the point where it is causing you to faint or experience other signs and symptoms of dangerously low blood sugar. The National Eating Disorders Association has resources on how to identify the signs that you may have an eating disorder, a hotline for help, as well as easily accessible information on everything from how to know when you need help to how to find quality treatment options in your zip code.

    People who are not diabetic don’t spontaneously have hypoglycemia for no reason, explains Dr. Christofides. Its often an indication of another underlying issue, such as a hormone deficiency or eating disorder, so its important to schedule an appointment with your doctor to determine the cause in order to prevent complications.

    Common causes of hypoglycemia in people without diabetes include:

    • Pancreatic tumor

    • Hormone deficiencies

    • Anorexia and other eating disorders

    Signs & Symptoms Of Low Blood Sugar

    How to use the One Drop glucose meter

    Keeping blood glucose levels in a healthy range can be challenging.

    When the amount of sugar in your blood has dropped below your target range , it is called low blood sugar .

    If your blood sugar has dropped, you may feel:

    • shaky, light-headed, nauseated
    • an increase in heart rate
    • sweaty, headachy
    • weak, drowsy
    • numbness or tingling on your tongue or lips

    Symptoms of very low blood sugar are more severe and can make you:

    • confused and disoriented
    • lose consciousness
    • have a seizure

    Make sure you always wear your MedicAlert® identification and talk to your doctor or diabetes educator about prevention and emergency treatment for severe low blood sugar.

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    What Extreme Conditions Can Occur If Hypoglycemia Is Left Untreated

    Although severe episodes which can trigger potentially life-threatening comas are rare, they require immediate emergency room care, so its best to make sure you are tracking your blood sugar so that you never have to worry about getting to that point. A drop in blood sugar means less fuel for your brain, so its critical for your body to receive enough glucose. Hypoglycemia that leads to extended, reduced brain function is the biggest concern, as this can lead to seizures and loss of basic bodily functions controlled by the brain, which can ultimately lead to death, explains Dr. Dyer.

    As your low blood sugar gets worse, you may experience more serious symptoms, including:

    • Feeling weak.
    • Having difficulty walking or seeing clearly.
    • Acting strange or feeling confused.
    • Having seizures.

    Severe low blood sugar is below 54 mg/dL. Blood sugar this low may make you faint . Often, youll need someone to help you treat severe low blood sugar.

    People with diabetes may experience low blood sugar as often as once or twice a week, even when managing their blood sugar closely. Knowing how to identify and treat it is important for your health. Learn how to treat low blood sugar.

    Understanding Your Blood Sugar

    The best way to understand how your blood sugar changes day-to-day is to regularly use a blood glucose meter to check your blood sugar level. If youre newly diagnosed, its also helpful to keep a food journal in addition to a blood sugar log, as well as tracking any physical activity.

    Your blood sugar patterns are unique to you. Over time youll have a better understanding of which foods raise your blood sugars the most, as well as how your blood sugar responds to different types of exercise.

    Some people with diabetes choose to use a continuous glucose monitor to monitor their blood sugar trends.

    A continuous glucose monitor is a device with a sensor worn under the skin which measures blood sugar levels every 5-15 minutes. This is useful for identifying trends in blood sugar levels and can help predict and identify hypoglycemia sooner.

    Using a CGM can reduce the amount of finger prick glucose tests needed each day, which is an added benefit.

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    Exercise Food And Alcohol

    For people with type 1 diabetes, maintaining the correct blood glucose level involves balancing how much insulin you inject, the amount of food you eat, and how much energy you burn during exercise.

    Hypoglycaemia may occur if you’ve taken your dose of insulin as usual, but your carbohydrate intake is lower than normal or has been used up more quickly. This may happen if you delay or miss a meal or snack, don’t eat enough carbohydrate, or exercise more than usual.

    People with diabetes who’ve drunk too much alcohol, or drank alcohol on an empty stomach, can also get hypoglycaemia.

    However, it’s not always possible to identify why a particular episode of hypoglycaemia has occurred, and sometimes it happens for no obvious reason.

    Are There Any Newer Technologies To Prevent Hypoglycemia

    What Really Happens To Your Body When Your Blood Sugar Drops

    We are lucky that in this day and age, we can predict hypoglycemia and prevent it through technology like continuous glucose monitors, explains Dr. Shah. Additionally, he notes that there are newer insulins available to help decrease episodes of hypoglycemia.

    One of our roles as your doctor is to educate every patient about the self-management of diabetes and to create a personalized care plan, explains Dr. Shah. By self-managing your condition you will really feel empowered enough to take control of your health.

    Dr. Shah is located at the Hackensack Meridian Health Medical Group Diabetes Center, part of Hackensack Meridian Health Medical Group. Call to schedule an appointment at the office in Old Bridge.

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