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What Happens If Your Blood Sugar Is Too Low

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Check Your Blood Sugar Often

Treating Low Blood Sugar

Regularly checking your blood sugar level can help you keep it in your target range. If youve had low blood sugar episodes in the past, you may want to check your blood sugar levels before driving or operating machinery.

Talk with your doctor about when and how often you should check your blood sugar.

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

  • 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:

    • Provide food or fluids

    Are There Any Newer Technologies To Prevent Hypoglycemia

    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.

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    How To Better Control Blood Sugar

    Those with diabetes can avoid dysglycemia by following a few simple tips:

    • Test it. Set up a schedule for testing your blood sugar and stick to it.
    • Log it. Keep a written record of your blood sugar or use your meter or your phone to save your readings.
    • Watch for trends. Be aware of your blood sugar trends, and pay attention to when your levels go up or down.
    • Establish routines. Your blood sugar will be more stable if you have routines for eating and exercising.
    • Know your symptoms. Learn how you feel when your blood sugar is low and when it is high.

    How Is Hypoglycemia Diagnosed

    4 Early Warning Signs That You Should Check Your Blood Sugar Levels ...

    If you suspect you have low blood sugar, its important to check your blood sugar right away. If you dont have a blood glucose meter and youre on diabetes medications that increase insulin, talk with your doctor about getting a meter.

    If you experience low blood sugar often say, a few times a week see your doctor right away to find out why. Your doctor will begin your visit by requesting your medical history, asking questions about your eating habits, and learning more about the symptoms youre experiencing.

    If you dont have diabetes but suspect you have hypoglycemia, talk with your doctor about your symptoms. Your doctor will use three criteria, sometimes referred to as Whipples triad, to diagnose low blood sugar:

    • Signs and symptoms of low blood sugar. Your doctor may require you to fast, or abstain from drinking and eating for an extended period of time, so they can observe your low blood sugar signs and symptoms.
    • Documentation of low blood sugar when your signs and symptoms occur. Your doctor will order a blood test to analyze your blood sugar levels in a laboratory.
    • Disappearance of the signs and symptoms of low blood sugar. Your doctor will want to know whether the signs and symptoms go away when your blood sugar levels are raised.

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    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.

    High Blood Glucose: Hyperglycemia

    Hyperglycemia means that you have too much blood glucose. It happens when your blood glucose level is around 200 mg/dL or higher. Hyperglycemia can happen if you miss taking your diabetes medications, eat too much or do not get enough exercise. Sometimes, the medications you take for other problems cause high blood glucose.

    Symptoms of hyperglycemia include:

    • Having blurry vision
    • Having to urinate often

    If you have these symptoms, check your blood glucose right away. If its too high, follow these steps:

    • Check your blood glucose every four hours. If your level does not go down after two checks or your symptoms get worse, call a member of your diabetes team.
    • Drink water or other sugar-free liquids, such as diet soda or Crystal Light.
    • You may need to take an extra dose of insulin. Your diabetes educator talks with you more about this.

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    What Happens When Sugar Is Low

    Low blood sugar levels can also cause a variety of problems within your central nervous system. Early symptoms include weakness, lightheadedness, and dizziness. Headaches can occur from a lack of glucose, especially if you have diabetes. You may also feel signs of stress, such as nervousness, anxiety, and irritability.

    How do you feel when your sugar is low?

  • a fast or pounding heartbeat
  • becoming easily irritated, tearful, anxious or moody.
  • What is the best thing to eat when your blood sugar is low? Fruits that provide the appropriate amount of carbohydrates include half a banana, 15 grapes, two tablespoons of raisins or a small apple or orange. Fruit juice can also boost blood sugar levels. Norton suggests half a cup of your favorite fruit juice, such as apple, orange, pineapple or cranberry juice.

    What causes blood sugar to drop suddenly?

    Low blood sugar Not eating enough food or skipping meals, taking too much medicine , exercising more than usual, or taking certain medicines that lower blood sugar can cause your blood sugar to drop rapidly.

    Manage Low Blood Glucose Early

    Managing when BSLs are too low (hypoglycaemia)

    Learn to recognise your early warning signs of having a hypo. Be alert to what these are and test your blood glucose levels if any of these symptoms develop. Also make sure to always carry your emergency treatment with you. Keep it in your bag, at work and at home so you can treat low blood glucose early before it becomes more serious.

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    How Do You Know If You Have Low Blood Sugar

    Even some healthy people also can experience low blood glucose from time to time. For instance, if you dont eat all day long or when being very hungry, you may experience some early symptoms of hypoglycemia, such as fatigue, headache, or shakiness. How do you know if you have low blood sugar?

    Can a person with no diabetes have low blood sugar?

    Sometimes theres no obvious reason why low blood sugar happens. Very occasionally, it can happen in people who do not have diabetes. If you have diabetes, these tips can help reduce your chances of getting low blood sugar: Check your blood sugar regularly and be aware of the symptoms of a low blood sugar so you can treat them quickly.

    Low Blood Sugar For Children Age 6 And Older

    A blood sugar less than 70 is too low.

    • Take 10 to 15 grams of quick-acting carbohydrate right away, such as:
    • Drink 3 to 4 ounces of juice
    • Drink 3 to 4 ounces of soda pop that has sugar
    • Chew 3 to 4 glucose tabs
  • Wait at least 15 to 30 minutes. If you still feel signs of low blood sugar, then recheck your blood sugar.
  • If your blood sugar is still less than 70, take another 10 to 15 grams of quick-acting carbohydrate.
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    When Your Blood Sugar Gets Low

    Check your blood sugar whenever you have symptoms of low blood sugar. If your blood sugar is below 70 mg/dL, treat yourself right away.

    1. Eat something that has about 15 grams of carbohydrates. Examples are:

    • 3 glucose tablets
    • One half cup of fruit juice or regular, non-diet soda
    • 5 or 6 hard candies
    • 1 tablespoon or 15 mL of sugar, plain or dissolved in water
    • 1 tbsp of honey or syrup

    2. Wait about 15 minutes before eating any more. Be careful not to eat too much. This can cause high blood sugar and weight gain.

    3. Check your blood sugar again.

    4. If you do not feel better in 15 minutes and your blood sugar is still lower than 70 mg/dL , eat another snack with 15 g of carbohydrates.

    You may need to eat a snack with carbohydrates and protein if your blood sugar is in a safer range — over 70 mg/dL — and your next meal is more than an hour away.

    Ask your provider how to manage this situation. If these steps for raising your blood sugar do not work, call your doctor right away.

    Take Your Insulin As Prescribed

    Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar)

    High blood sugar occurs when your body has too little insulin, or your body cant use insulin properly. Administering insulin can bring your blood sugar levels down.

    Talk to your doctor about how much rapid-acting insulin you should administer when your blood sugar is high.

    You may want to check your blood sugar about 1530 minutes after taking insulin to make sure your blood sugar is going down and that its not dropping too low.

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    How Do I Measure Blood Sugar

    If you have diabetes, you probably already keep a watchful eye on your blood sugar through the use of a continuous glucose monitor or a blood sugar meter . Blood sugar measurement is also typically included in routine lab work for people without diabetes â your physician will usually order a glycated hemoglobin test, which measures your average blood sugar over the past two to three months.

    Say your A1C test comes back with no sign of diabetes â constantly measuring your blood sugar can still be helpful. For instance, some people experiment with using a CGM to see how their body responds to different types of food. However, itâs good to note that this is a fairly cost-intensive way of figuring out your nutrition, and writing down a food diary that includes how you felt after each meal will also help you figure out what to eat.

    Check out these blood sugar monitors if youâre looking for recommendations on how to keep track of your levels at home.

    Food Exercise And Medications Affect Blood

    Too little food, strenuous exercise that burns large amounts of sugar, caffeine or excessive alcohol consumption can cause hypoglycemia. Medications prescribed to treat heart problems or high blood pressure, such as beta-blockers and angiotensin-converting enzyme agents, also called ACE inhibitors, may mask symptoms of low blood sugar, reports the University of Michigan Health System. Medications, such as quinolones, antibiotics prescribed to treat urinary tract infections, can cause hypoglycemia, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.

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    Treating An Episode Of Hypoglycaemia

    The immediate treatment for hypoglycaemia is to have some sugary food or drink to end the attack.

    For example, this could be:

    • a glass of fruit juice or non-diet soft drink
    • between three and five dextrose tablets
    • a handful of sweets

    At first you should avoid fatty foods and drinks, such as chocolate and milk, because they dont usually contain as much sugar and the sugar they do contain may be absorbed more slowly.

    After having something sugary, you should have a longer-acting carbohydrate food, such as a few biscuits, a cereal bar, a piece of fruit or a sandwich.

    It will usually take around 15 minutes to recover from a mild episode of hypoglycaemia. If you have a blood glucose meter, measure your blood sugar again after 15 to 20 minutes. If its still too low , you should have some more sugary food or a drink before testing your levels again in another 15 to 20 minutes.

    When treating someone else with hypoglycaemia, if the above treatment isnt effective, you may be able to help them by applying glucose gel to the inside of their cheeks, and gently massaging the outside of their cheeks.

    It may take 10 to 15 minutes before they feel better. This shouldnt be done if the person is drowsy or unconscious because of the risk of choking.

    How To Restore Your Blood Sugar

    The Highs and Lows of Blood Sugar

    If you notice you have low blood sugar, the most important thing to do is to take action immediately.

    The leading cause of low blood sugar is food, which produces the glucose that converts into energy and used by our cells. So if you have the condition, the following tips are your best bet to increase blood sugar.

    Take High Carbohydrate Snack

    Consuming snacks that contain a high amount of carbohydrate can help you restore low blood sugar level. According to the American Diabetes Association having snacks that contain at least 15 grams of Carbohydrates is what you need t increase blood sugar level. Examples of snacks are

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    Always Follow Up With The Doctor

    It is very important to call your doctor as soon as possible after experiencing nocturnal hypoglycemia. The patient and doctor should try to figure out what caused the episode and how to prevent it from happening again.Often the doctor will suggest:

    • Changing the dose or timing of insulin or other medications

    • Setting an alarm for the early morning so that the patient can test their blood glucose levels and determine how often the episodes occur

    • Having the person wear a continuous glucose monitor that checks blood glucose every five minutes with an alarm that wakes the patient from sleep if levels start to drop too low. This option is usually reserved for patients who experience frequent or severe nocturnal hypoglycemia

    Managing Blood Sugar Levels

    Many people with diabetes must check their blood sugar levels daily with a glucose meter. This device takes a drop of blood, usually from a finger, and displays the sugar level within a few seconds.

    People with type 1 diabetes will need to take insulin as their doctor recommends, usually several times a day.

    Those with type 2 diabetes or gestational diabetes may need to change their diet and exercise habits. They may also need to take oral medications or insulin.

    A number of strategies can help prevent hyperglycemia.

    People should:

    • check their blood sugar levels as their doctor advises and take the correct amount of insulin, if they have type 1 diabetes
    • speak to their healthcare provider or dietitian about which foods to eat or avoid, how much to eat, and how often
    • take precautions to avoid infections, for example, through regular hand washing, as illness, such as a cold, can trigger a rise in blood pressure
    • plan their food intake and exercise to balance blood sugar levels
    • minimize stress, as far as possible, for example, through exercise, getting enough sleep, and stress-reducing activities such as meditation or yoga

    Low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia, can happen when a person:

    • has certain medical conditions
    • does a lot of exercise
    • skips meals or eats too little

    It can also be a side effect of diabetes medicines. Taking too much insulin can result in low blood sugar levels.

    Symptoms of low blood sugar may include:

    • visit a doctor regularly

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    Whats The Link Between Diabetes And Hypoglycemia

    Hypoglycemia is most common, by far, in people with diabetes. Treatment for the diseaseoften involves taking medication to increase insulin. Hypoglycemia can develop if things like food, exercise and diabetes medications are out of balance.

    Common pitfalls for people with diabetes include:

    • Being more active than usual.
    • Drinking alcohol without eating.
    • Eating late or skipping meals.
    • Not balancing meals by including fat, protein and fiber.
    • Not eating enough carbohydrates.
    • Not timing insulin and carb intake correctly .

    Also, if someone with diabetes uses the wrong insulin, takes too much or injects it incorrectly, that can cause hypoglycemia.

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