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Can High Glucose Cause Headaches

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What Are The Symptoms Of Hyperglycemia

Can Blood Sugar Levels Cause Headaches| Symptoms Of High Blood Sugar In Non-Diabetics 2021

Its especially important to know the early signs of hyperglycemia if you have type 1 diabetes. If hyperglycemia is left untreated in people with type 1 diabetes, it can develop into ketoacidosis, where ketones, which are toxic acids, build up in the blood. This condition is an emergency situation that can lead to coma or death.

Early symptoms of hyperglycemia include:

  • High blood sugar.
  • Unusual fruity smell on the breath.
  • Deep labored breathing or hyperventilation.
  • Rapid heartbeat.

How Do You Feel When Your Blood Sugar Is Too High

Blood sugar can be defined as the amount of sugar in the blood. It is measured in milligrams per deciliters of blood . The normal range of the blood sugar should be between 80 mg/dl and 120 mg/dl. In this range, the body feels the best. If the level of the blood sugar is higher than the normal range, it is called hyperglycemia. The blood sugar level which is lower than the normal range is called hypoglycemia. This is very dangerous for diabetic patients. If sugar level is too low, then patient may become unconscious or lose muscle coordination or may feel cold. One of the most common symptoms of low blood sugar is dizziness. If you feel some of this symptoms, you should check your blood sugar level immediately..

Can Diabetes Cause Headaches

Headaches arent experienced by everyone with diabetes. Since they are still attempting to balance their blood sugar levels and find a routine that works, people who have recently been diagnosed with diabetes may feel headaches more frequently. Although headaches are less common in older people than in younger people, they are nonetheless a reason for concern. Although the frequency of headaches declines beyond the age of 40, estimates in adults over the age of 50 range from 12 to 50%, and frequent headaches are observed in up to 17% of people over the age of 65, compared to 6% in those under the age of 65. 1,2 In persons over the age of 65, the risk of a subsequent headache with potentially fatal consequences increases tenfold.

Variations in blood sugar levels are the most common cause of headaches in diabetics. A headache can be a sign that your blood glucose levels are excessively high, a condition called hyperglycemia by experts. Hypoglycemia is a term used by doctors to describe when blood glucose levels are too low.

Changes in hormone levels, such as epinephrine and norepinephrine, may cause headaches that a person can link to these oscillations. These hormones may induce discomfort by constricting the blood arteries in the brain. Both adults and children suffer from headaches. In reality, headaches are the most common cause of discomfort. Theyre also a prominent cause of school and work absences.

Broadly, headaches can be classified as either primary or secondary:

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Secondary Headaches Can Be Caused By A Variety Of Factors Including Diabetes Other Factors To Consider Are:

  • high blood pressures or hypertension
  • stroke
  • injuries
  • structural abnormalities inside the brain

The discomfort linked to secondary headaches varies, just as the reasons do. Diabetic headaches can range from mild to severe, and theyre believed to happen frequently. These headaches could indicate that your blood sugar is either high or too low. The very first approach towards relief would be to get your blood sugar levels under control. Second-line pain medications, including such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, may be beneficial.

What Causes Your Diabetes Headaches

Can You Get Headaches From Diabetes

For many people, having a headache is, unfortunately, a fact of life. Headaches are extremely common, and the World Health Organization states that almost half of adults are estimated to have a headache over the course of a year. There are many different types of headaches, ranging from migraines to tension headaches to cluster headaches and even ice cream headaches that result from eating or drinking something that is extremely cold. Headaches can also occur due to sinus infections, high blood pressure, and medications. If you have diabetes, headaches are even more common. Given all of the possible causes of headaches, its not surprising that so many people suffer from them.

For those who have diabetes and find that a pounding head is more than just a passing nuisance, its time to sort out possible causes. Some of the likely culprits may be directly related to your diabetes. Lets take a look at five ways diabetes causes headaches.

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Could My Headache Be Related To Gestational Diabetes

Pregnancy causes all kinds of changes in a woman’s body, some leading to symptoms that are less than pleasant. Headaches are a common complaint among pregnant women, resulting from a variety of causes. Migraines, exhaustion, and stress are common culprits, but in some cases, headaches can be a symptom of a potentially serious condition called gestational diabetes.

If left untreated, gestational diabetes can be very dangerous for the mother and her developing baby, but with careful monitoring and management, a woman with gestational diabetes can have a healthy pregnancy. Properly controlled gestational diabetes can lessen the number of headaches endured throughout pregnancy.

Let’s look at how headaches are related to gestational diabetes and what you can do to find relief.

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Heart Attack And Stroke

At its most serious, lightheadedness may be a sign of a heart attack or stroke. Other symptoms of a heart attack often accompanying lightheadedness are chest pain, shortness of breath, nausea, arm pain, back pain, or jaw pain. Symptoms suggesting a stroke are the sudden onset of headache, numbness, weakness, visual changes, trouble walking, or slurred speech. But in older adults, lightheadedness may be the only symptom of a heart attack or a stroke, especially if it doesnt go away, says Dr. Grossman. In that case, every second counts, so get to an emergency room for treatment.

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How To Avoid Sugar Headaches

Whether you have diabetes or not, you can manage your diet to avoid developing a headache after sugar consumption. Try these strategies:

  • Avoid sugar binges. Remember that sugar exists in many foodsand in alcohol. To avoid a sugar headache, dont binge on candy, desserts or cocktails.

  • Drink plenty of water. Adequate hydration can help your body eliminate excessive glucose from the bloodstream.

  • Eat complex carbohydrates instead of simple ones. Simple carbohydrates like refined grains, potatoes and table sugar cause insulin levels to spike, which can lead to headache. To avoid that, aim to eat more complex carbohydrates like fresh vegetables and whole grains. Complex carbs take longer to digest and dont dramatically raise insulin levels.

  • Reduce your sugar consumption gradually. Taper off sugary drinks, for example, instead of quitting cold turkey. This approach will allow your brain and blood vessels to adapt to the change in glucose levels.

  • Track your carbohydrate and sugar consumption, either formally or informally. People with diabetes should precisely track all the simple and complex carbs they consume throughout the day to keep their blood sugar levels stable. Others can use a dietary app for this purpose, or simply limit the amount of simple carbohydrates you eat with each meal.

Treating Headaches From Hypoglycemia

Blood Sugar Keeps Crashing! No Energy, Hunger, Lightheaded, Anxious, Headaches | Dr. Mandell

The first step in treating a hypoglycemia-induced headache is confirming that the pain is due to low blood glucose. A blood glucose test can check this.

Taking a blood glucose test is especially important for people with diabetes who wake up with a headache in the morning, as it can be a sign of nocturnal hypoglycemia.

The American Diabetes Association recommends that people with low blood sugar consume 15 grams of simple carbohydrates or glucose before rechecking levels after 15 minutes.

Once blood sugar returns to the target range, symptoms, including headache pain, should reduce.

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Causes Of Dizziness And Vertigo

A wide range of conditions and diseases can cause dizziness, including:

  • inner ear problems disorders of the inner ear account for about half of all cases of persistent dizziness. Such disorders include Menieres disease, benign paroxysmal positional vertigo and vestibular neuritis
  • anxiety disorders stress or anxiety may play a role in causing dizziness or, more commonly, may be a contributing factor in dizziness from other causes, such as inner ear disease
  • brain disorders a common cause of dizziness is migraine, even without the headache that most people associate with a migraine. Very rarely, other causes of dizziness can include stroke or other brain diseases
  • other conditions some cases of dizziness are due to underlying medical conditions such as low blood pressure, infection, some heart problems and hypoglycaemia . Medications that are used to treat conditions such as epilepsy, coronary heart disease and high blood pressure can also cause dizziness in some people
  • unknown causes although a cause may not be found in some people, it does not necessarily mean that these people cannot be helped by the appropriate treatment.

Also Check: What Helps Bring Your Sugar Down

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.

References

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Type 2 Diabetes In Children

Type 2 was once called adult-onset diabetes because it was rare in children and teens. But it has become more common since the mid-1990s, in large part because more young people are overweight or obese, a risk factor for the disease.

Children are also at higher risk of type 2 diabetes if they donât get enough exercise or if they have a close relative with the condition. African American, Hispanic, Native American, Alaska Native, Asian American, and Pacific Islander children are more likely to get it.

Scared Of Getting Diabetes

Diabetes and headaches: What

According to the Journal of Geriatric Cardiology , the type of diet that Dr. Doyle recommends is highly beneficial for preventing and treating type 2 diabetes.

For people accustomed to SAD standard American diet the idea of the whole food, plant based diet will seem impossible.

If preventing and treating type 2 diabetes is as simple as adhering to a particular diet, why dont more mainstream medical doctors push this approach?

Its because medical school spends only a few hours on nutrition, and only in the general sense.

During internships and residencies at hospitals, medical doctors are essentially trained in only diagnostics, drugs and surgery.

Type 2 diabetes is usually treated with diet and exercise alone, yes, but the patient is typically only told to watch sugar intake or cut back on fast food, rather than told to keep intake of animal and processed products under 10 percent.

FoodTherapyMD is the brainchild of Dr. Mitchell Doyle and recognizes that phytonutrients, the substances that make plant food so amazing, can be tailored to fight specific disease states.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. Shes also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.

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What Is Gestational Diabetes

Gestational diabetes is a condition that affects up to 10%¹ of pregnant women in the US each year. It is often diagnosed during the second or third trimester in women who didn’t have diabetes before becoming pregnant. Gestational diabetes usually resolves after the baby is born and a woman’s blood sugar levels return to normal.

Without proper treatment, gestational diabetes can cause severe headaches, and it can be dangerous for your unborn baby’s health as well as your own.

During pregnancy, a woman’s body creates extra hormones to support the development of a baby. Although scientists don’t know exactly why, sometimes a woman’s placenta makes hormones that cause problems with insulin production, and her body is unable to use that insulin effectively. When this happens, sugar can’t enter cells to be converted into energy.

This leads to insulin resistance, and if left untreated, it can cause severe headaches.

Gestational diabetes can also cause glucose to build up in your bloodstream, leading to hyperglycemia or high blood sugar. Without treatment, gestational diabetes can lead to all kinds of health problems for you and your unborn baby, such as:

  • Large babies at birth, weighing over 9 pounds

  • An increased risk of C-section

  • Preterm birth

  • Increased chance of type 2 diabetes later in life for mother and baby

  • Increased chance of obesity for the baby later in life

Type 2 Diabetes In Older Adults

Your risk of type 2 diabetes goes up as you age because your body can become resistant to insulin and your pancreas might not work as well as it used to.

Diabetes is more likely to cause complications in people 65 and older, especially heart attacks, eye problems, loss of a leg , and kidney disease.

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Type 2 Diabetes Can Be A ‘devastating Diagnosis’ Says Expert

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Type 2 diabetes is a chronic metabolic disease that results in blood sugar, or glucose, abnormalities. This causes a host of symptoms and related complications, some of which can be life-threatening. A common symptom of high or low blood glucose is a headache.

Is Diabetes To Blame For Your Headaches

â¡Top 10 Prediabetes Symptoms You MUST AVOID (Reverse Prediabetes)

An occasional headache once every couple of months isnt a big deal. But regular headaches are likely related to something more significant.

If you live with type 1 or type 2 diabetes or prediabetes, those headaches could be directly related to your blood sugars. Which means you might even be able to prevent them from occurring or reduce how often they occur!

In this article, well look at how and why diabetes can lead to recurring headaches, and what you can do to reduce the frequency of diabetes headaches or prevent them altogether.

  • Drink more water!
  • Read Also: Healthy Diet To Lose Weight For Diabetics

    When To Call Your Doctor

    Let them know if you have any of the common symptoms of type 2 diabetes or if you have questions about type 2 diabetes. It’s important to get tested and start treatment early to prevent serious complications.

    Show Sources

    American Diabetes Association: “Diabetes Symptoms,” âEye Complications,â âDiabetes and Hearing Loss,â âKidney Disease ,â âSkin Complications.â

    American College of Endocrinology: “Position statement on inpatient diabetes and metabolic control.”

    Physicians Desk Reference : ”Diabetes – Type 2 Symptoms.”

    Mayo Clinic: âDiabetes symptoms: When diabetes symptoms are a concern,â âDiabetic hypoglycemia,â âDiabetic neuropathy,â âHyperglycemia in diabetes,â âType 2 diabetes.â

    Annals of Medical and Health Sciences Research: âXerostomia Due to Systemic Disease: A Review of 20 Conditions and Mechanisms.â

    Evidence-Based Diabetes Management: âThe Persistent Complication of Hypoglycemia in Diabetics.â

    National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: âDiabetes, Heart Disease, and Stroke,â âType 2 Diabetes.â

    Johns Hopkins Medicine: âDiabetes and High Blood Pressure.â

    CDC: âDiabetes.â

    Nutritional Solutions To Avoid High Blood Sugar

    Dr. Doyle says, The solution is to drink plenty of fluids and to keep your blood sugar down in the first place!

    And the absolute most effective way to do that is to adopt a whole food plant based diet.

    This is a diet based on vegetables, fruits, whole unprocessed grains, legumes, nuts and seeds, with minimal animal products and processed foods or sugars.

    Also Check: What Do You Give A Diabetic With High Blood Sugar

    Fluctuating Blood Sugar Levels

    When we eat food, our body gets to work on digesting and absorbing the meal. Assuming our digestive and endocrine systems are working properly, there is a normal, healthy rise in blood sugar followed by a gradual decline. Blood sugar is kept in a range that allows our body to have enough fuel to provide the brain and all organs of the body to perform vital functions.

    For some people, the ability to regulate blood sugar is impaired. Blood sugar levels may climb too high in response to sugars and other high-carbohydrate foods. Their body may sense this elevated blood sugar and respond with a surge in a hormone called insulin to try to reduce the elevated blood sugar. The surge sometimes results in blood sugar getting too low. This can cause sugar headache for those who are prone to it.

    The migraine brain is often described as being hyper responsive to normal, benign stimulation. A person who is not prone to headache or migraine attacks may be completely unaware of the ups and downs of their blood sugar whether they are normal fluctuations or not. Contrarily, the person predisposed to migraine may be triggered by the inconsistencies and abnormalities in blood sugar. In this theory about sugar and migraines, the body is sometimes unable to maintain blood sugar in the proper range. This causes the brain to respond with pain as a warning signal that something is wrong.

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