How Can People With Diabetes Cope With Sleep Issues
Careful management of blood sugar levels can help improve sleep for people with type 2 diabetes. Additionally, given the close relationship between diabetes and sleep, good sleep hygiene habits are particularly important. These include both daytime and nighttime habits, such as:
- Adhering to a diet plan that works for you and helps keep blood sugar controlled
- Getting regular exercise
- Keeping a regular sleep schedule
- Avoiding stimulants like caffeine or nicotine before bed
- Keeping the bedroom cool, dark, and quiet
Based on your personal situation, your doctor may be able to recommend sleep aids for diabetics or additional ways to get better sleep. They may choose to conduct a polysomnogram, or sleep study, to see if a sleep disorder is to blame for your sleep problems. Secondary sleep disorders can then be treated with targeted therapies such as a CPAP machine.
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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.
Can Undiagnosed/uncontrolled Diabetes Cause Fatigue
Undiagnosed and uncontrolled diabetes can cause fatigue. Earlier in this article, reactive hypoglycemia was mentioned, which is when your body tries to make too much insulin to keep up with the sugar intake and causes a sugar crash. There are approximately 7 million people with undiagnosed diabetes in the world. Fatigue is the most common symptom of diabetes and hopefully leads to people seeing their doctors and being diagnosed to get control of their blood sugar.
Uncontrolled diabetes causes fatigue for many reasons that were also mentioned previously in this article. First of all, blood sugars that are either too high or too low do not deliver fuel to the cells for the body to operate. Secondly, complications that are caused by uncontrolled diabetes such as kidney disease and nerve damage also cause fatigue. The most important thing to do is to control blood sugar.
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High Blood Sugar Causes Fatigue
Fatigue is one of the most common symptoms of high blood sugar. In people with diabetes, it is referred to as diabetes fatigue. Many people with the condition feel tired all the time regardless of how well they sleep, how healthily they eat, or how much they exercise on a regular basis. Research has shown that up to 61% of people who are recently diagnosed with the condition experience fatigue. However, fatigue doesnt just occur in those with diabetes. It can also happen in people with normal or prediabetic blood sugar levels if they experience a sudden spike in their blood sugar.
When the body experiences a spike in blood sugar levels, it goes into overdrive trying to create enough insulin to balance it out. If there isnt enough insulin or the body isnt responding to the insulin as it should, your body will start to pull from fat to create the energy it needs. When this happens, energy is used from the splitting of a molecule known as adenosine triphosphate, or ATP. When ATP expels one of its three phosphates for energy, it turns into another molecule known as adenosine diphosphate, or ADP. If there are no energy sources to pull from, the ATP cannot regain the phosphate it gave away, leading to fatigue.
What Is Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes develops when the body does not use insulin efficiently and gradually loses the ability to make enough insulin. Insulin is a hormone that controls the amount of glucose in the blood. Insulin helps glucose produced by the digestion of carbohydrates move from the blood into the bodys cells where it can be used for energy.
In type 2 diabetes, the bodys cells do not respond effectively to insulin. This is known as insulin resistance. it causes glucose to stay in the blood, leading to a higher than normal level of glucose in the blood .
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Fatigue In Diabetes: A Vicious Cycle
Fatigue is a frequently encountered symptom in the general practice management of diabetes. Fatigue may be the presenting symptom of diabetes, or it may present as one of a constellation of complaints. It may even persist after glycemic control is achieved. All of these clinical situations, irrespective of causality or association, may be grouped together as DFS. Fatigue has been reported to be prevalent in patients with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes . Its association with inflammation, body mass index, insulin treatment, and depression has also been studied . The lack of correlation between fatigue on the one hand and hyperglycemia and glycemic variability on the other is also known . The unique features of fatigue in persons with diabetes have also been recognized, prompting the development of disease-specific diagnostic tools , as opposed to generic ones .
Diabetes and fatigue seem to have a bidirectional relationship, both feeding and worsening each other, thereby creating a vicious cycle of DFS . This relationship is strengthened by biochemical, psychological, and lifestyle factors.
When Is It Good To See A Healthcare Provider
Its usual to feel exhausted now and again, but if fatigue persists longer than 2 weeks, it can be a good time to visit a healthcare provider. For people who also experience signs of blood glucose spikes like an enhanced thirst, urinating often, nausea, drowsiness, or fatigue could be an indication that they have developed or are at risk of developing diabetes. For people who already are diabetic, regular appointments for regulating their blood glucose and managing their diabetes are very vital since these signs can indicate that their current treatment plan is no longer effective.
Diabetes fatigue management is very important for those with both type 1 and types 2 diabetes. It might be troublesome to manage the condition, particularly at first, but not unfeasible. The best approach to manage signs or complications of the medical condition is to book an appointment with a diabetes specialist as they can aid in tacking fatigue and other signs by including certain lifestyle changes.
High glucose levels in the blood can have dangerous consequences if left untreated. Diabetics already are aware of the outcomes of high blood sugar all too well, but for those who are unaware, it may be difficult to pin down the risk of developing the condition or illnesses that follow it like fatigue.
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Diabetes And Fatigue: Everything You Need To Know
What exactly is fatigue? Is it just being tired after working a long week or not getting enough sleep?
The answer is no.
Fatigue is excessive tiredness that makes carrying out simple tasks difficult and interferes with one or more life functions. Sounds terrible, doesnt it? Well imagine having a chronic illness along with the fatigue. Diabetes and fatigue have a strong relationship, and it can make a persons life very difficult. The following article will discuss the relationship, along with ways to beat and reduce the risk of living with diabetes and fatigue.
The Importance Of Symptoms
Modern diabetes care is characterized by a strong focus on evidence-based, number-driven targets and outcomes. While this approach does have its benefits, it has shortcomings and limitations as well, one of which is that little attention is paid to the symptomatic well-being of the persons with diabetes. At times, in fact, complaints may be neglected, and symptoms sacrificed, to justify the use of particular therapeutic strategies or tools. A casual reading of modern guidelines suggests that the end-target is more important than the means . Understandably, such clinical judgment is bound to be met with patient dissatisfaction. One symptom which may be ignored in the quest for optimal numerical end-targets, is fatigue.
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Complications Of Type 2 Diabetes
Itâs important to get your blood sugar under control to avoid these serious conditions:
- Hypoglycemia. If your blood sugar falls below 70 milligrams per deciliter , it can lead to accidents, coma, and death.
- Hyperglycemia. Blood sugar that goes above 180 to 200 mg/dL can give you heart, nerve, kidney, and vision problems. Over the long term, it also can cause coma and death.
Over time, people with type 2 diabetes may have other health problems:
- Diabetic ketoacidosis. When you donât have enough insulin in your system, your blood sugar rises, and your body breaks down fat for energy. Toxic acids called ketones build up and spill into your urine. It can cause coma and death if you donât treat it.
- Heartand blood vessel diseases. People with diabetes are more likely to have conditions like high blood pressure and high cholesterol, which play a role in heart disease. Also, high blood sugar can damage your blood vessels and the nerves that control your heart.
- High blood pressure. Diabetes doubles your risk of high blood pressure, which makes you more likely to have heart disease or stroke.
- Nerve damage . This can cause tingling and numbness, most often in your feet and legs. But it can also affect your digestive system, urinary tract, blood vessels, and heart.
- Eyedamage. Diabetes can cause:
- Glaucoma, a buildup of pressure in your eyes
- Cataracts, a cloudiness of your lens
- Retinopathy, which is damage to the blood vessels in your eyes
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.
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
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Detecting Blood Sugar Spikes
Fatigue is related to a numberless of other conditions, along with day-to-day life as well as other stressors, so it alone does not tell an individual whether he or she is experiencing a raised level of glucose. Diabetics are encouraged to keep checks over their blood glucose levels to sense any abrupt alterations. This can be a very common way by which people can detect blood sugar spikes.
Also, the most common reason behind hyperglycemia is inappropriate insulin production. Insulin is the hormone that plays a key role in regulating blood glucose levels, and if it is not being formed at sufficient levels or at all, it may cause high glucose levels.
Some reasons why insulin levels in the body become insufficient, including:
- Consuming in excess
- Not receiving a sufficient amount of insulin from treatment
- Being stressed all the time
- Having a broken diabetes pump
- Using insulin that is unsuccessful at managing blood glucose levels
Other risk factors that must be considered are age, weight, history of smoking, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels. These may add to diabetes.
Why Does Diabetes Cause Tiredness
Diabetes and fatigue are often discussed together. In fact, if you have diabetes, youre more than likely going to experience fatigue at some point. However, there may be much more to this seemingly simple correlation.
Diabetes, which affects your blood sugar and the production of insulin by the pancreas, can also have inflammatory markers. A wealth of studies have looked at the possible connections between diabetes and fatigue.
It can be challenging to treat both diabetes and fatigue. However, there are numerous options that can help. You may first need to see your doctor to determine the exact cause of your fatigue.
Treating both diabetes and fatigue is most successful when regarded as whole, rather than separate, conditions. Healthy lifestyle habits, social support, and mental health therapies can positively impact diabetes and fatigue at the same time.
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Causes Related To Blood Sugar
High blood glucose makes your blood sludgy, slowing circulation so cells cant get the oxygen and nutrients they need. Margaret commented, I can tell if my sugars are high in the morning, because groggy doesnt begin to describe it. Drugged is how it feels.
Low sugars levels also cause diabetes fatigue, because when blood sugar is low, there is not enough fuel for the cells to work well.
In addition, high blood glucose can cause diabetes fatigue through inflammation. Blood vessels get inflamed by the sugar. When this happens, according to research, immune cells called monocytes come into the brain, causing fatigue.
The Truth About Blood Sugar Levels And Tiredness
Many people donât realize that your energy levels and how tired you feel is very closely related to your blood sugar levels. If you look up the symptoms of both hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia and youâll see tiredness and fatigue listed as symptoms for both conditions. So, over long periods of time, poorly managed blood sugars can definitely lead to unexplained tiredness, fatigue, and exhaustion.
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What Are The Effects Of Fatigue On Diabetes
When someone becomes fatigued, it can lead to a never ending cycle. First, because of the fatigue, they become tired and dont want to do anything. That leads to lack of exercise and poor dietary choices. These choices make them depressed, which in turn makes the fatigue even worse. This cycle continues and eventually the person begins to have complications from diabetes because their blood sugars are not under control.
Fatigue can cause someone to lose motivation to take care of themselves. They stop checking their blood sugar like they should or do things for themselves that they know they should because they are just too tired. Insulin dosages are skipped or not given accurately because of the time and energy that it takes to do it correctly. It is very important for all individuals with fatigue to find a solution, but it is even more important for those people with diabetes because of the risk of complications due to non-compliance.
How Can I Prevent From Feeling Tired All The Time
Preventing fatigue with diabetes is a pretty challenging thing to do. The first thing that needs to be done is a visit to see your physician to make sure that the causes of fatigue is not due to another issue. Other things that can be done are:
- Keep blood sugar levels in a normal range
- Make sure that you are getting enough sleep
- Take a power nap during the day if you are able
- Try to limit the stressors in your life
- Ask for help from others when its possible
Later in this article there is more information about how to reduce fatigue and regain energy. The main goal is to try to minimize complications from diabetes such as kidney disease and nerve damage because of the increase in the risk of fatigue that they bring.
The main goal is to regain a level of energy that allows you to function and manage your disease and your life. All people want a quality of life, and fatigue doesnt allow that to happen.
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What Sleep Disorders Are Common In People With Diabetes
Individuals with type 2 diabetes have a higher chance of developing accompanying sleep disorders, the most common being restless legs syndrome and obstructive sleep apnea.
- Restless Legs Syndrome : Approximately one in five people with type 2 diabetes have restless legs syndrome, marked by tingling or other irritating sensations in the legs that can interfere with getting to sleep. People with diabetes are also at risk for another condition called peripheral neuropathy. Caused by nerve damage, the symptoms of peripheral neuropathy are very similar to RLS and include numbness, tingling, and pain in the extremities. People who experience these symptoms should consult a healthcare provider, as peripheral neuropathy requires treatment to reduce long-term nerve damage.
- Obstructive Sleep Apnea : Obstructive sleep apnea is a sleep disorder in which a person momentarily stops breathing at recurring intervals throughout the night. In most cases, the person is not aware this is happening, though a bed partner may observe snoring and gasping. These lapses in breathing cause micro-arousals that interfere with the natural progression of the sleep stages and impair sleep quality. OSA typically occurs in people who are overweight or obese, as they often have a thicker neck circumference that interferes with the airway. The condition can be treated with a continuous positive airway pressure device that keeps the airway open to restore normal breathing and reduce interruptions to sleep.
How Can I Beat/reduce Fatigue With Diabetes And Regain My Energy
There are many ways to reduce fatigue with diabetes and regain energy. The most important thing that you can do is to control your blood sugar. This limits complications and also provides your body with the fuel that it needs to operate. You can also eat smart and exercise. Exercise actually decreases fatigue up to 65%. By taking care of yourself, you can decrease fatigue and increase quality of life.
You shouldnt make any changes to your diet, insulin, or exercise regimen without talking to your doctor. First off, your doctor needs to be consulted and you need to talk with him about the following things:
- Can my fatigue be caused by another disease? This rules out all other reasons for your fatigue so you can focus on the main cause.
- Are any of the side effects from my medications causing the fatigue?
- Is it a good idea for me to start taking supplements such as Vitamin D, Vitamin B, Calcium, Chromium, Ginseng, Coenzymes, or Magnesium?
- Is my thyroid okay?
- What kind of exercises would be best for me?
- How can I better control my blood sugar to decrease fatigue?
- What is a healthy weight for me to be?
Eating too many carbohydrates can cause you to feel drowsy. You should also schedule an appointment to talk with your dietitian or nutritionist to discuss the following things:
- Would juicing be okay for me?
- Am I eating too many carbs?
- How can I improve my diet to decrease my fatigue?
Other things that you can do to decrease fatigue include:
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