Treating Low Blood Sugar
You are at risk of having a low blood sugar reaction if you:
- Skip or delay a meal or snack
- Take too much insulin or eat too few carbohydrates
- Drink alcohol, especially without eating carbohydrates
Check your blood sugar if you have any of these symptoms:
- Weakness and/or fatigue
If your blood sugar is less than 70 milligrams per deciliter :
- Eat 15 to 30 grams of carbohydrate
- Wait 15 minutes and then recheck your blood sugar
- If your blood sugar is still less than 100 mg/dl, take another 15 grams of carbohydrate and retest your blood sugar in another 15 minutes. Repeat if necessary.
Important: If you have frequent low blood sugars speak to your doctor. You may need changes in your medication and/or meal plan.
What Is Reactive Hypoglycemia
Reactive hypoglycemia occurs when your body experiences low blood sugar after a meal. It typically occurs about 2 hours after a meal, says Zumpano, and can sometimes even happen up to 4 hours after eating.
Its important to note that its different than hypoglycemia, too. Hypoglycemia is related to a fasting state when you havent eaten anything for an extended period, she adds. And your blood sugar naturally drops below whats considered a normal range. People who have diabetes or impaired fasting glucose are more prone to experiencing hypoglycemia.
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How Pops Can Help You Control Your Blood Glucose Levels
Keeping tabs on your glucose levels throughout the day is a bit of a tall order. This is especially true when you consider the craziness that is life in 2020. With so much to keep track of, we can often forget to ensure that were taking care of ourselves mentally and physically.
With Pops Rebel + Mina, you can gain peace of mind knowing that youre always in control of your diabetes. Rebel combines the traditional test kit into one seamless meter, which connects to your phone. This means you can carry it around with you all day with ease. With Rebel, measuring your blood sugar is convenient no matter where you are.
Mina is Rebels trusty sidekick. Not only will she remind you to check your blood sugar every two hours, but shell encourage you to be more active too. Shes also eager to learn more about you to ensure that she is offering the best recommendations for how to show diabetes whos boss .
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Walgreens Glucose Tablets And Gummies
- Form factor. Capsules that are about the size of a quarter and a quarter of an inch thick. They also now offer glucose gummies.
- Dosing & flavors. A serving size is 1 tablet for 4 g of carbs. In order to treat a low it is advised users eat 3 to 4 tabs. The Glucose Tablets are offered in Raspberry, Orange, Fruit, Grape or Tropical Fruit, and the gummies come in a mixed berry flavor of Raspberry/Strawberry/Blueberry.
- Convenience factor. Like others, these tablets cone in a 50-count bottle with safety/freshness seal, and a to-go vial that holds up to 10 tabs. Their gummies come in a similar 60-count bottle.
- User feedback. The Fruit Punch tabs received 4.2 out of 5 stars on the Walgreens website. Most users agreed that they had good flavor and quickly increased their blood sugar. These have a good flavor and when my glucose level drops below 60, it gets my number up fairly quickly, writes Patty Gowen.
- Cost. $6.99 for a 50-count bottle
- Where to buy.Walgreens
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How To Use Glucose Tablets And Gels
Glucose tabs and gels are meant to be taken when someone is having a low blood sugar . Doctors typically recommend eating 15 grams of fast-acting carbohydrates, and these tabs and gels are packaged accordingly. For example, most glucose tablets contain 4 grams of carbs each and its typically recommended that you eat 4 tablets while experiencing a low.
Glucose gel comes in single-use tubes with a twist-off top that requires you to squeeze the gel directly into your mouth and swallow. If you use gel, be sure to swallow the tubes entire content so you can get its full serving.
Be sure to check your blood sugar 10 to 15 minutes after ingesting, to ensure your levels are rising and you are back to a safe range. Please note that if you wear a CGM , your readings will often lag behind your actual blood sugars, so it is advisable to double-check with a fingerstick blood glucose meter if possible.
These tabs and gels typically relieve low blood sugar symptoms within 10 minutes. Although you can use glucose gel to treat any low, it is especially recommended when you are dropping fast, since it does not require you to chew. Gel might also be great for children with diabetes, who have trouble eating glucose tabs or cannot chew them fast enough when needed.
Note that glucose tabs and gels are not meant for emergency hypoglycemia, when someone may be on the verge of passing out or already there. For emergency treatment, look to a glucagon emergency kit or Baqsimi nasal spray.
Early Signs Blood Sugar Is Low
In general, theres a good deal of variation when it comes to the signs of low blood sugar. Milder and more common symptoms of low blood sugar include:
- Shakiness or jitteriness
|Target Blood Sugar Levels for People With Diabetes|
|Before a meal||80 to 130 milligrams per deciliter|
|Two hours after a meal||180 mg/dL or lower|
|Severe low blood sugar||54 mg/dL or lower|
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Why Exercise Is Important To Lower Blood Sugar
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How Do I Check My Blood Sugar
You use a blood glucose meter to check your blood sugar. This device uses a small drop of blood from your finger to measure your blood sugar level. You can get the meter and supplies in a drug store or by mail.
Read the directions that come with your meter to learn how to check your blood sugar. Your health care team also can show you how to use your meter. Write the date, time, and result of the test in your blood sugar record. Take your blood sugar record and meter to each visit and talk about your results with your health care team.
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How To Treat Lows As Quickly As Possible
You have to love it when research studies come out and prove what you believed all along.
I had this experience when a systematic review and meta-analysis in Emergency Medicine Journal in September 2016 compared the speed of glucose tablets against dietary sugars for treating hypoglycemia in adults who had symptoms of being low.
The dietary forms of sugar tested included sucrose , fructose , orange juice , jellybeans, Mentos, cornstarch hydrolysate, Skittles, and milk.
What the compiled data from four studies suggested is that:
When compared with dietary sugars, glucose tablets result in a higher rate of relief of symptomatic hypoglycemia 15 minutes after ingestion and should be considered first, if available, when treating symptomatic hypoglycemia in awake patients.
In other words, glucose worked faster in resolving symptoms of feeling lowand who wouldnt want to treat a low as quickly as possible?
Why Am I Having Lows
If you are experiencing low blood glucose and youre not sure why, bring a record of blood glucose, insulin, exercise, and food data to a health care provider. Together, you can review all your data to figure out the cause of the lows.
The more information you can give your health care provider, the better they can work with you to understand what’s causing the lows. Your provider may be able to help prevent low blood glucose by adjusting the timing of insulin dosing, exercise, and meals or snacks. Changing insulin doses or the types of food you eat may also do the trick.
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How To Use Glucose 4 Gram Chewable Tablet Dextrose Oral Formulations
Read and follow all directions on the product package before you need to take this product. Be sure to keep this product handy in case it is needed. If you have any questions, consult your doctor or pharmacist.
Take this product by mouth as directed. If you are taking a chewable form of this product, chew it thoroughly before swallowing. Some liquid forms need to be shaken before use. Check the manufacturer’s directions.
Check your blood sugar level 10 to 15 minutes after taking this product. If your blood sugar level is still low, take another dose. The blood sugar level should be kept up by eating snacks such as crackers, cheese, a meat sandwich, or milk.
If your symptoms do not get better within 20 minutes or if they get worse, or if you think you may have a serious medical problem, get medical help right away.
Why Glucose Tablets Really Are Best For Hypoglycemia
It often comes as a surprise to people without diabetes when I inform them that the biggest immediate risk for anyone with Type 1 diabetes is not high blood sugar, but low blood sugar.
Me: I need some sugar, Im running low.My well-intentioned but misinformed companion: You cant have sugar, youre diabetic!
Cant have sugar is the CliffsNotes version of diabetes that most of the world understands, but we know its a far more complicated and nuanced condition than a simple prohibition on eating cookies. We have to be masters of physiology. We have to understand how ALL the foods we eat interact internally and how those interactions affect the rise in our blood sugar. And nowhere is that more important than when we are dealing with hypoglycemia.
Now, I have committed the sin of treating a low with a brownie or a candy bar before. We all have. Its just so tempting! I mean, when else can you say, with ANY truth at all, that you have a medical need for dessert?!?
Im low, give me another slice of pie!
Looks like I need some ice cream!
Our health-care providers, educators, and all the literature in the world tells us we should treat a low with glucose tablets, juice, or another source of straight, fast-acting glucose rather than these other indulgent treats. But why? Why cant I have a cookie when Im low? Whats so great about those chalky, OK-tasting-but-not-at-all-exciting glucose tablets? The answer is in the fat!
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Blood Sugar And Hypoglycemia
When blood sugar levels are too low , many people with diabetes will experience symptoms caused by hypoglycemia. However, some people may not have any symptoms until it reaches much lower .
Symptoms for someone with hypoglycemia include:
- Hunger or nausea
- Anxiety and nervousness
- Trembling and shakiness
In some instances, someone may not experience these symptoms or have gotten used to them. Because of this, its essential to always be aware of what your levels are at.
What Are Glucose Packets
Glucose is a simple sugar that’s used by your body to provide energy for the cells in your entire body – it’s one of our main sources of fuel! When blood glucose levels are too low during hypoglycemia episodes , diabetics need fast-acting emergency glucose so they can have enough energy again to get through their day without feeling sick.
Glucose gels, glucose powder packets, or glucose paste packs all work by delivering fast-acting glucose into your bloodstream which raises blood sugar levels back up quickly so that diabetics have enough energy again to get through their day without feeling sick.
This is an emergency treatment product because it’s best used during times when a diabetic has low blood sugar symptoms like weakness, dizziness, confusion, shaking/tremors in muscles or hands/feet, or slurred speech.
The only way to treat low blood sugar symptoms is with products containing fast-acting glucose which can be delivered via these different types of forms including glucose packets, glucose gel for diabetics, powder, or paste packs.
Glucose powders and glucose gels are two different ways to deliver the sugar that diabetics need during low blood glucose. Glucose packets mostly come in the form of powder and are individually packed. Glucose gel is a liquid form of glucose, mostly packed individually, and are easily taken when needed due to their more liquid form.
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