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Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar) in People Without Diabetes

Topic Overview

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Hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, is most common in people who have diabetes. If you have already been diagnosed with diabetes and need more information about low blood sugar, see the topics:

What is low blood sugar?

You may have briefly felt the effects of low blood sugar when you’ve gotten really hungry or exercised hard without eating enough. This happens to nearly everyone from time to time. It’s easy to correct and usually nothing to worry about.

But low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia, can also be an ongoing problem. It occurs when the level of sugar in your blood drops too low to give your body energy.

What causes hypoglycemia in people who don’t have diabetes?

Ongoing problems with low blood sugar can be caused by:

  • Medicines.
  • Diseases of the liver, kidneys, or pancreas.
  • Metabolic problems.
  • Alcohol use.
  • Stomach surgery.

What are the symptoms?

Symptoms can be different depending on how low your blood sugar level drops.

  • Mild hypoglycemia can make you feel hungry or like you want to vomit. You could also feel jittery or nervous. Your heart may beat fast. You may sweat. Or your skin might turn cold and clammy.
  • Moderate hypoglycemia often makes people feel short-tempered, nervous, afraid, or confused. Your vision may blur. You could also feel unsteady or have trouble walking.
  • Severe hypoglycemia can cause you to pass out. You could have seizures. It could even cause a coma or death.

If you’ve had hypoglycemia during the night, you may wake up tired or with a headache. And you may have nightmares. Or you may sweat so much during the night that your pajamas or sheets are damp when you wake up.

How is hypoglycemia diagnosed?

To diagnose hypoglycemia, your doctor will do a physical exam and ask you questions about your health and any medicines you take. You will need blood tests to check your blood sugar levels. Some tests might include not eating (fasting) and watching for symptoms. Other tests might involve eating a meal that could cause symptoms of low blood sugar several hours later. The results of these types of tests can help diagnose the cause.

You may also need tests to look for or rule out health problems that could be affecting your blood sugar levels.

How is it treated?

You can treat a sudden episode of low blood sugar by eating or drinking something with sugar in it. Some examples of “quick-sugar foods” are fruit juice, soda, milk, raisins, and hard candy. You may also take glucose tablets. This is usually all that’s needed to get your blood sugar level back up in the short term.

If your hypoglycemia is caused by a health condition, you may need treatment for that condition. There also may be steps you can take to avoid low blood sugar. For example, talk to your doctor about whether changes in your diet, medicines, or exercise habits might help.

What should you do in an emergency?

If mild or moderate hypoglycemia isn’t treated right away, it can turn into severe hypoglycemia. People with severe hypoglycemia usually pass out. If you pass out, someone should call 911 right away.

If you have a health problem that tends to cause low blood sugar, it’s a good idea to teach your family, friends, and coworkers about what symptoms to watch for and what to do. You may also want to wear a medical alert bracelet or necklace.

Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar) – Managing Side Effects


Care During Chemotherapy and Beyond

What Is Hypoglycemia?

Hypoglycemia may be described as low levels of sugar (glucose) in the blood. This
is commonly seen in people who are diabetic, and their blood sugar levels fall too
low – either because they took their medications and did not eat properly, or the
dosage of medication is too high for them.

Normal blood Glucose (sugar) levels are 60-110 mg/dL.  Normal values may vary
from laboratory to laboratory. Levels much lower than these can indicate

Causes of Hypoglycemia:

Causes of hypoglycemia may include:

  • Excessive exercise, or lack of food intake
  • Certain forms of alcohol may cause low blood sugar levels
  • Certain kinds of tumors, affecting the pancreas (insulinomas)
  • After stomach surgery
  • People with kidney failure, who are on dialysis, may experience hypoglycemia.
  • If you have liver disease, you may be at risk for hypoglycemia.
  • You may have problems with your thyroid, adrenal, or pituitary glands.
  • You may not be absorbing food that you eat very well, thus resulting in hypoglycemia.

Symptoms of Hypoglycemia:

  • You may feel sweaty, shaky or hungry. You may feel faint.
  • Extremely low blood sugar levels may cause you to be confused, or disoriented.
  • Severely low levels of blood sugar may cause coma.
  • You may have a fast heartbeat, or feel palpitations.

Things You Can Do About Hypoglycemia:

If you are experiencing low blood sugar levels as a result of your treatment of
diabetes, your healthcare provider may instruct you on the use of close blood sugar
monitoring during this time. Follow all of your healthcare provider’s instructions.

  • Try to exercise. Low blood sugar levels are often temporary. If you are diabetic,
    you will have high blood sugars as well. Make a daily walk either alone, or with
    a friend or family member a part of your routine. Even light walking or aerobic
    activity may help you to promote the flow of oxygen in your lungs and blood (oxygenation),
    lower your blood sugar levels, and help to prevent long-term complications of hyperglycemia.
    Consistent diet and exercise will help your healthcare provider determine your insulin
    or diabetic pill dosages, and help you to obtain better control of your disease.
  • Follow the recommended diet. A diabetic diet may be suggested even if you only have
    a short-term elevation in blood sugar due to an infection, or the use of steroids.
    If you have high blood sugar levels, and take too much insulin, your blood sugar
    levels may become too low.
  • You will most likely meet with a dietician if you are diagnosed with diabetes, either
    Type 2 or gestational, to help you determine a diet that is right for you. This
    will help you to gain control over your disease or condition that may be causing
    the high or low blood sugar levels.  Reading the labels on food is helpful
    to know what kinds of calories, fat and protein you are taking in. Some general
    dietary recommendations include:
  • Limit Carbohydrates – Carbohydrates, either simple (such as fruit and sugar) or
    complex, (such as pasta and cereals), have the greatest impact on blood sugar levels.
    Your diet should include around than 50% carbohydrates. Avoid sugar, and instead,
    use artificial sweeteners, such as nutrasweet, aspartame, or saccharin.
  • Protein – your diet should consist of 15-20% protein. Long-term damage to your kidneys
    may be corrected by restricting protein – if you are diabetic.
  • Increase fresh vegetables and fiber intake – Up to 55 grams of fiber in your diet
    per day is recommended. Fiber and fresh vegetables help to decrease blood sugar
    levels, maintain regular bowel habits, and may prevent certain cancers.
  • There are many types of “good and bad” fats. The easiest thing to remember is to
    limit your intake of saturated fats and oils in your diet.
  • You will most likely be instructed on obtaining a blood sugar monitor, especially
    if you have diabetes, and be asked by your healthcare provider to check your blood
    sugar levels at home. At first, you will be required to check your blood sugar levels
    up to 4 or more times a day, to make sure that the levels are in the normal range,
    without extremely high or low levels. Eventually, with diet, exercise, and the proper
    medication regimen, you may be able to check your blood sugar levels less often.
  • A sensible bedtime snack may help to prevent low blood sugar levels during the nighttime.
  • Alert your friends, family and close contacts about your condition. Explain to them
    the symptoms and signs of low blood sugar, including sweatiness, shakiness and confusion.
    Keep candy or instant glucose tablets in your pocket in case your blood sugar gets
    too low, and instruct them to seek emergency assistance if they are unsure what
    to do.
  • Wear a “medic alert” bracelet, if you have diabetes, or a history of high or low
    blood sugars (hyperglycemia or hypoglycemia).
  • Make sure you tell your doctor, as well as all healthcare providers, about any other
    medications you are taking (including over-the-counter, vitamins, or herbal remedies). 
  • Remind your doctor or healthcare provider if you have a history of diabetes, liver,
    kidney, or heart disease.
  • Keep yourself well hydrated. Drink two to three quarts of fluid every 24 hours,
    unless you are instructed otherwise.
  • Avoid alcohol. Certain forms of alcohol may cause you to have a severely high or
    low blood sugar level. If you are taking pills to control your hyperglycemia, alcohol
    use may cause life-threatening interaction.
  • If you have diabetes, it is important to inspect your feet daily. People with long-term
    high blood sugar levels may develop signs of diabetic nephropathy, with a decreased
    sensation and blood flow to your feet and toes. If you have neuropathy, you may
    be unable to notice if there has been any damage to your feet or toes. If you develop
    an infection, or a wound, you may not be able to heal as well.
  • Keep your feet clean and dry. Wear white cotton socks.
  • Inspect your feet and toes for cracks, hardened areas, or rashes.
  • Apply moisturizer daily, but not between the toes.
  • If you notice any wounds, or changes, follow up with a podiatrist or your healthcare
  • If you have diabetes, you should see an ophthalmologist to have your eyes checked
    yearly. Any change in vision should be reported as soon as you notice.
  • A most serious side effect of diabetes and long-term high blood sugar levels is
    kidney damage. Your urine may be checked periodically for protein (called, proteinuria).
    If there is damage to the kidneys, you will have protein in your urine. If your
    kidney damage is noticed early, and there is only a low level of protein in your
    urine, your healthcare provider may help you to prevent further damage by discussing
    diet, exercise and medications. Strict blood sugar control will help to prevent
  • A blood test, called Hemoglobin A1C, will measure your average blood sugar levels
    for 90 days. Your healthcare provider may order this, every 3 months if you have
  • If you experience symptoms or side effects, especially if severe, be sure to discuss
    them with your health care team.  They can prescribe medications and/or offer
    other suggestions that are effective in managing such problems.
  • Keep all your appointments.

Drugs That May Be Prescribed by Your Doctor:

There are no medications prescribed specifically for low blood sugar. The goal
is to identify and treat the cause of your symptoms. The treatment of
low blood sugars is to identify the underlying cause, and to treat that condition. 
If you have a low blood sugar, you will be instructed by your healthcare provider
to take instant glucose tablets, or perhaps 4 oz of orange juice (if you have normal
kidney function).

When to Contact Your Doctor or Health Care Provider:

Call your doctor with the following symptoms:

  • Nausea that interferes with your ability to eat, and is unrelieved by any prescribed
  • Vomiting (vomiting more than 4-5 times in a 24 hour period).
  • Diarrhea (4-6 episodes in a 24-hour period), unrelieved with taking anti-diarrhea
    medication and diet modification.
  • Severe constipation, unrelieved by laxatives, lasting 2 to 3 days.
  • Symptoms of muscle twitching, irritability, and/or increased urination.
  • Poor appetite that does not improve.
  • If you notice excessive sleepiness, confusion.

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Test Abnormalities

Note: We strongly encourage you to talk with your health care professional
about your specific medical condition and treatments. The information contained
in this website is meant to be helpful and educational, but is not a substitute
for medical advice.

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Low blood sugar in the mornings: Symptoms, causes, and treatment

Low blood sugar in the mornings, also known as morning hypoglycemia, can make people feel faint, light-headed, or confused when they wake up.

Having low blood sugar in the mornings is common in people on medication for diabetes, though it can also happen for other reasons.

In this article, we look at the reasons why blood sugar can drop in the morning, symptoms of hypoglycemia, and how to treat and prevent this from happening.

When people go for long periods without eating, the levels of sugar in the blood drops. Since most people do not wake up to eat, blood sugar levels can fall overnight.

Following a period without food, blood sugar levels are known as fasting blood sugar.

Usually, an overnight fast will not affect blood sugar levels, because the body will prevent it from dropping to dangerous levels; for example, the liver releases some of its stored sugar overnight.

Normal fasting blood sugar levels for a person with diabetes are between 70 and 130 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL). A person with diabetes can measure their fasting blood sugar levels in the morning before breakfast.

When blood sugar levels fall below 70 mg/dL, people may experience symptoms of low blood sugar. Some people may feel very sick with blood sugar levels of 70 mg/dL, while others might not notice signs until blood sugar dips lower than this.

A person who has frequent episodes of hypoglycemia will become gradually less aware of these symptoms. Conversely, a person who typically has high blood sugar levels can develop symptoms even at levels that are otherwise considered normal.

A person who is pregnant is more likely to experience morning hypoglycemia because their body uses more calories to help nurture the developing fetus.

Some other causes of low blood sugar in the morning include:

  • diabetes medications, especially long-acting diabetes medications of the sulfonylurea family or insulin
  • some other drugs, such as the pneumonia drug pentamidine
  • alcohol consumption, particularly in people with type 1 diabetes
  • organ failure, mainly due to chronic kidney disease
  • recent stomach surgery, particularly bariatric (weight loss) surgery
  • rare enzyme or hormone disorders that make it difficult for the body to absorb or break down glucose
  • a sudden increase in activity level, particularly in people with diabetes, since exercise can lower blood glucose
  • vomiting or diarrhea
  • low-carbohydrate diets
  • an insulin-producing tumor (insulinoma)
  • other hormonal imbalances, such as low adrenal function and low growth hormone
  • accidental ingestion of antidiabetic drugs

In rare cases, low blood sugar may be due to cancer, particularly tumors that release insulin-like factors or use up large amounts of glucose.

Share on PinterestHeadaches are a common symptom when blood sugar levels continue to drop.

Symptoms of hypoglycemia range from mild to more severe. Initially, a person will experience symptoms, such as a fast heartbeat, sweating, hand tremors, and hunger.

However, if the blood sugar levels keep dropping, a person may begin to experience headaches, confusion, changes in personality, irritability, seizures, and even coma if not treated.

Common symptoms include:

  • feeling jittery, shaky, or sweaty
  • loss of coordination
  • anxiety
  • irritability
  • exhaustion
  • a headache
  • fatigue
  • lightheadedness
  • difficulty concentrating
  • a fast heartbeat
  • paleness
  • changes in personality
  • hunger, including physical symptoms of hunger, such as nausea or a stomach ache
  • muscle aches
  • blurred vision

If hypoglycemia is left untreated, symptoms can get worse. This is most common in people who use insulin to control their diabetes and experience frequent episodes of low blood sugar, which might make them less aware of the early warning symptoms.

Symptoms of severe low blood sugar include:

  • fainting and loss of consciousness
  • seizures

Anyone experiencing severe low sugar levels should see a doctor immediately as it is a medical emergency. People who are in organ failure or who have another serious medical condition, including diabetes, should go to the emergency room.

Treatment for hypoglycemia depends on its cause. When hunger is the culprit, eating a glucose-rich meal, such as fruit and pancakes, can quickly raise blood glucose levels.

Consuming rapid-acting carbohydrates, such as 8 ounces of fruit juice, regular coke, glucose tablets, or candy is also a good way to treat low sugar levels.

People with diabetes who often experience low blood sugar levels in the morning may need to alter their medication dosage or change their diet. However, always discuss symptoms with a doctor before making any changes to diet or medication.

People who develop hypoglycemia because of alcohol may need to avoid alcohol. Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is a dangerous medical condition and withdrawal can be difficult.

People who drink too much alcohol should talk to a doctor about their treatment options. A person with AUD along with diabetes or another serious medical condition may need a medically supervised detox.

When hypoglycemia is due to a temporary illness, such as a stomach virus, drinking plenty of water or drinking an electrolyte drink can help prevent dehydration. If vomiting or diarrhea continues for more than a few days, see a doctor.

Other causes of morning hypoglycemia can be dangerous or even life-threatening. So, people who frequently experience low blood sugar in the morning should see a doctor.

Keeping a log of symptoms can help with getting an accurate diagnosis. It may also help a person work out what causes low blood sugar levels in the morning and how to prevent it happening.

Share on PinterestEating fruit and pancakes for breakfast will quickly raise blood sugar levels.

It may not be possible to prevent morning low blood sugar when symptoms are due to a serious medical condition, which is why it is essential to address the underlying condition.

However, remaining well-nourished and eating regular meals may prevent symptoms from getting worse.

When caused by a lack of eating, a person can prevent symptoms by:

  • avoiding low carbohydrate diets, which can cause low blood glucose
  • eating a snack before bed
  • choosing high-fiber snacks, as fiber-rich food slows down glucose absorption and can help prevent low blood sugar in the morning
  • eating small, frequent meals throughout the day rather than three larger meals

People with diabetes should monitor their blood glucose levels throughout the day. They may notice a pattern that can help them prevent blood sugar drops.

Changing diabetes medications, or in some cases, stopping them, can help, but always see a doctor before making any medication changes.

Low blood sugar in the mornings happens for many different reasons. It is vital not to self-diagnose. Even if symptoms go away after eating a meal, consider making permanent lifestyle changes to reduce the risk of morning blood sugar drops.

Healthful changes include eating a later dinner or having a snack before bed. See a doctor for help managing chronically low morning blood sugar.

Extremely low blood sugar prevents the body from getting the energy it needs and is a medical emergency. So, if eating a meal does not relieve symptoms, a person should go to the emergency room or call a trusted doctor.

Most people who experience low blood sugar in the morning can manage symptoms with a few simple lifestyle changes. Though low blood sugar can make a person feel very ill, it is not always a cause for concern.

When blood sugar levels are dangerously low, prompt treatment will increase the chances of a full recovery.

What Makes You Pass Out

Fainting, known medically as syncope, and colloquially as passing out, are scary experiences. It’s been described in several different ways by several different people, but it’s hard to say exactly what the experience is like. The symptoms of the lead up are easy to see, though. Many people report feeling a heaviness in their legs, and their body will become warm. They’ll become dizzy, and lightheaded, and their vision will become blurred. They may vomit, yawn, or sweat. Then, inevitably, they fall down. In any event, it’s critical to visit Rapid Care or search for a Doctor office near me on your mobile device.

Fainting has many well-known causes: heart attack, stroke, and (of course) a harsh hit. While knocking someone out with blunt force has been a fixture of boxing matches for over a century, medical conditions can cause the same symptom. In any case, any time a person passes out, it’s a medical emergency. There are cases, such as losing a boxing match, where passing out may not be a sign of a bigger issue, but it should always be treated as though it is.

Hypoglycemia and Hypotension

Hypoglycemia, otherwise known as “low blood sugar” or “low blood glucose,” is a condition that occurs when your blood sugar level drops dangerously below normal. For diabetics, this will generally occur if their blood sugar drops to or below 70 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL), while numbers for non-diabetics vary wildly. If you are interested, your general care physician will be able to tell you. Hypoglycemia can have a variety of symptoms, as well. Sweat, hunger, and headaches are common, as well as becoming pale, irritable, nervous, and shaky. Moderate hypoglycemia will often lead to a quickened heartbeat, and difficulty concentrating. Severe hypoglycemia can lead to an inability to eat or drink, seizures and convulsions, and (of course) fainting.

Hypoglycemia is most often seen in diabetics and is caused by a lack of insulin intake. Hypoglycemia in non-diabetics can be caused by many things, with excessive alcohol consumption being the major factor. Other causes include medication, sudden insulin overproduction, and hormonal deficiency. Many illnesses of the liver, illnesses of the kidney, and eating disorders can also lead to hypoglycemia.

Hypotension, or low blood pressure, is very similar to hypotension. Again, there is no specific number at which your blood pressure is considered low. Hypotension is instead marked by a significant drop in average blood pressure when symptoms begin to arise. The earliest signs, much like hypoglycemia, are dizziness, lightheadedness, nausea, fatigue, blurred vision, and a lack of concentration. Hypotension can also cause dehydration, and vice versa — dehydration can cause hypotension. Severe hypotension can, of course, cause fainting. Hypotension can go beyond this, though, and become a life-threatening condition. Extreme hypotension can cause cold, pale skin, confusion, rapid breathing, and a weak, rapid pulse. Extreme hypotension is otherwise known as shock and is often fatal.

Hypotension is most often caused by medication. It can also be caused by a sudden reduction in blood volume or heart disease. Hypotension is a symptom of many other conditions, such as heart attack and Broken Heart Syndrome.

Hypoglycemia and hypotension are generally the middlemen through which other conditions cause fainting. The direct cause of fainting is typically a lack of blood flow or oxygen to the brain, which is in turn caused by hypotension or hypoglycemia. Through these conditions, fainting can be caused by heart attack, Broken Heart Syndrome, dehydration, starvation, blood loss, diabetes, kidney failure, and many more conditions.

Panic Attack

Although rare, fainting can also be caused by a panic attack. Panic attacks are brought on by sudden and intense fear, anxiety, or discomfort. While most often seen in people with anxiety disorders, panic attacks can also occur to people without them. Panic attacks are characterized early on by palpitations and a “pounding” heartbeat. People experiencing a panic attack may feel sweaty, shaky, or dizzy. Sudden chills or hot flashes are common, as are feelings of detachment. After this, a panic attack will cause feelings of smothering or choking, and sudden chest pain.

Panic attacks rarely lead to fainting because they increase blood pressure. However, in some cases, a person having a panic attack will begin to hyperventilate. When this occurs, they may temporarily starve the brain of oxygen. When this happens, the body will faint as a natural defense mechanism. Fainting caused by panic attacks is rarely a symptom of a larger medical condition, though it may be a symptom of a mental health issue. In any case, fainting should be treated as a medical emergency.

Fainting: What Makes You Faint?

You’re Dehydrated

Dehydration can happen if you don’t drink enough or you lose too much fluid. Then your blood pressure drops and your nervous system can’t control it well, which could make you faint. That’s why it’s a good idea to get plenty of water, especially when it’s hot outside. If your pee isn’t clear, you may need a bit more to drink.


It means your heart has an irregular beat. That sometimes slows the flow and amount of blood that gets to your brain, which can make you pass out. It may be the first or only obvious symptom of the problem. See your doctor right away if you suspect arrhythmia because it could be a sign of a serious heart problem that needs treatment.

Cyanotic Breath-Holding

It happens mostly in kids between ages 6 months and 5 years. They cry hard enough to cut off oxygen and trigger an automatic response that makes them faint. They may turn blue, pass out for about a minute, and seem groggy afterward. They don’t do it on purpose. It’s a reflex they can’t control. Though it’s scary to see at first, it’s nothing to worry about and might even happen repeatedly.

Pallid Breath-Holding

This one also happens mainly in young kids. A sudden fright or pain causes the heart to stop for a few seconds. With no sound, a child might open his mouth before turning very pale and passing out for about a minute. Pallid breath-holding sometimes happens after your child gets hurt. It’s not the injury itself that causes this automatic response, but the shock of it. It should go away by age 5.

Low Blood Sugar

The medical term is hypoglycemia. It may make you dizzy, shaky, tired, confused, and blur your vision. You can usually fix the problem if you get a few grams of carbs from juice or candy. Otherwise, you could pass out. If that happens, you need medicine called glucagon to help your body release more sugar.


High blood sugar from diabetes can damage the nerves in your body that help keep your blood pressure steady. That could lead to unusually low blood pressure that makes you pass out.


Some medications, like high blood pressure drugs and antidepressants, affect the way your heart and blood vessels act when you stand. This can drop your blood pressure and make you pass out. Insulin used to lower blood sugar when you have diabetes might cause hypoglycemia that also leads to fainting. In older people, different drugs sometimes combine with illness and the situation you’re in — like standing in a hot room –to make you faint.


It’s a sudden change in the brain’s normal electrical signals. Some symptoms, like eyes rolling back and jerking movements, may be similar to breath-holding. The difference is seizures make you unconscious for minutes, not seconds, and might make you lose control of your bladder. And you could see flashes of light or get unusual smells or tastes with no obvious source. See your doctor if you suspect a seizure.

Standing Up

If you faint when you rise, you could have a condition called postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS). It increases your pulse too much when you stand or sit up. You might feel sick, dizzy, shaky, or sweaty, and your heart may skip a beat. And you could pass out. It can help to drink plenty of fluids, limit caffeine and alcohol, and try to get up more slowly. Your doctor may suggest medicine to treat it.

Heart Problems

Damaged heart muscle, blocked or narrowed blood vessels (coronary heart disease), and other kinds of ticker trouble can stop enough blood loaded with oxygen from getting to your brain. When it makes you pass out, it’s called cardiac syncope. It may happen without warning, sometimes repeatedly over a period of weeks. See your doctor right away if you suspect this or also have chest pain, arrhythmia, fatigue, or other symptoms.


The technical term for this is vasovagal syncope. Your body overreacts to the sight of blood, sudden intense emotion, fear of injury, or something else that jars you. Your heart rate slows as blood vessels widen and blood pools in your legs, away from your brain. You may be cold, clammy, pale, and nauseated right before it happens. If you feel like you might faint, lie down and raise your legs.


You feel like you can’t get enough air, so you start to breathe in more quickly. Though it’s unclear why, this makes blood vessels around your brain shrink, which limits oxygen and makes you lightheaded and possibly faint. Fear, rather than a physical problem, usually causes it, though you can bring it on if you hold your breath. Your hands, feet, and mouth might also tingle.


Especially if it’s deep and you can’t stop, it might prevent your blood from getting enough oxygen, which could make you faint. It’s more common in babies with pertussis, but it can happen to anyone. Asthma, which makes it harder to breathe, may have the same effect. Get to a hospital right away if you have a serious asthma attack or pass out from coughing.

Drinking Alcohol

It causes your blood vessels to expand, which can lead to a drop in your blood pressure. You can pass out when you drink so much that you reach a dangerously high blood alcohol concentration.

Your Collar’s Too Tight

Carotid sinus syncope, or “tight-collar syndrome,” happens when something pushes on nerves at a wide part of your carotid artery in your neck. This interferes with blood flow to the brain and makes you faint. It happens quickly and without other symptoms like nausea, paleness, and sweating. In some cases, if it hasn’t happened before, it may be a sign of narrowed arteries that need treatment.

Low Blood Sugar (Hypoglycemia) | Diabetes

Have low blood sugar without symptoms? You may need to check your blood sugar more often.

Blood sugar levels change often during the day. When they drop below 70 mg/dL, this is called having low blood sugar. At this level, you need to take action to bring it back up. Low blood sugar is especially common in people with type 1 diabetes.

Knowing how to identify low blood sugar is important because it can be dangerous if left untreated. Read more about what causes low blood sugar and common symptoms.

Causes of Low Blood Sugar

There are many reasons why you may have low blood sugar, including:

  • Taking too much insulin.
  • Not eating enough carbs for how much insulin you take.
  • Timing of when you take your insulin.
  • The amount and timing of physical activity.
  • Drinking alcohol.
  • How much fat, protein, and fiber are in your meal.
  • Hot and humid weather.
  • Unexpected changes in your schedule.
  • Spending time at a high altitude.
  • Going through puberty.
  • Menstruation.

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. It’s important to know your signs. Common symptoms may include:

  • Fast heartbeat
  • Shaking
  • Sweating
  • Nervousness or anxiety
  • Irritability or confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Hunger

If you’ve had low blood sugar without feeling or noticing symptoms (hypoglycemia unawareness), you may need to check your blood sugar more often to see if it’s 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 (hypoglycemia unawareness). If you don’t 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 it’s low. This is very important to do before driving or being physically active.

Types of Low Blood Sugar

Nighttime low blood sugar

While low blood sugar can happen at any time during the day, some people may experience low blood sugar while they sleep. Reasons this may happen include:

  • Having an active day.
  • Being physically active close to bedtime.
  • Taking too much insulin.
  • Drinking alcohol at night.

Eating regular meals and not skipping them can help you avoid nighttime low blood sugar. Eating when you drink alcohol can also help. If you think you’re at risk for low blood sugar overnight, have a snack before bed.

You may wake up when you have low blood sugar, but you shouldn’t rely on that. A continuous glucose monitor (CGM) can alert you with an alarm if your blood sugar gets low while you’re sleeping.

Severe low blood sugar

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 (pass out). Often, you’ll 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.

Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) | University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics

Hypoglycemia occurs when the level of sugar in the blood is too low. It can also be called insulin shock or insulin reaction. Hypoglycemia is when the level of sugar in the blood is below 60 mg/dl. Check with your doctor or nurse to find out what blood sugar level is too low for you.


  • Taking too much insulin or oral medication
  • Not eating all of your meals and snacks or delaying meals and snacks
  • Doing more exercise than usual


Hypoglycemia can occur at any time. It is more likely to occur at peak times of insulin actions. It may occur during or after increased activity. It is more likely if you are late eating your food or reduce the amount that you eat.

Signs and symptoms

  • Sweating
  • Shaking
  • Nervousness
  • Hunger
  • Dizziness
  • Faintness
  • Pounding heart
  • Personality change
  • Confused thinking
  • Impatience
  • Crankiness
  • Numbness of lips and tongue
  • Headache
  • Blurred Vision
  • Slurred or slow speech
  • Convulsions
  • Unconsciousness


Immediately eat or drink something containing “quick acting” sugar. Some possibilities are:

  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup fruit juice
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup regular soda pop
  • 2-3 teaspoons sugar
  • 10 gumdrops
  • 5-7 lifesavers
  • 2 tablespoons of raisins
  • Over-the-counter sugar tablets or gel

If your symptoms do not disappear in 15 minutes and/or your blood sugar remains less than 80, repeat the treatment. Repeat every 15 minutes until the blood sugar is greater than 80.

If a reaction occurs at a time when you do not plan to eat your next meal or snack for more than 30 minutes, eat food containing starch and protein after you have taken a “quick acting” sugar source and begin to feel better. Foods containing starch and protein are necessary to help prevent another reaction.

Examples of appropriate snacks may be:

  • 6 saltine crackers
  • 3 graham crackers
  • 1/2 meat sandwich
  • 1 slice toast and 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup milk

The food eaten for a reaction need not be subtracted from a meal plan.

Obtain a blood sugar when symptoms occur if you are able. If symptoms are severe, treat the reaction first and then obtain a blood sugar. Do not drive nor operate equipment if you feel your blood sugar is low.

If your blood sugar drops low enough for you to become unconscious, you must be taken to the hospital and/or treated with glucagon.

Glucagon is a hormone that causes the blood sugar to rise. It can only be given by injection. It is used to treat a low blood sugar if a person becomes semi-conscious or unconscious due to a severe low blood sugar. Please ask your nurse for instruction on glucagon. Your doctor will need to write a prescription for glucagon so you can have it available at home.

Prevention of low blood sugar

Do not skip or delay meals. If your diet plan includes snacks, make sure to take these.

Measure insulin dosage carefully and inject it properly. If you cannot see well, a family member or a visiting nurse can prepare your insulin injections for you.

Take only the prescribed amount of insulin or oral medication for diabetes that your doctor has ordered.

Keep exercise consistent from day to day. Eat a snack or reduce your insulin prior to unusual exercise.

If you are taking insulin, notify your doctor if you have low blood sugars four or more times per week or if you have a severe low blood sugar. Severe low blood sugars are those less than 40 mg., those requiring help from another person, or those which cause you to have a convulsion or become unconscious.

If you are taking oral medication for your diabetes notify your doctor or nurse if blood sugars are running less than 80 mg. or if you have a severe low blood sugar.

Your symptoms

You will need to know and be aware of how you feel when your blood sugar is too low. People have different symptoms and respond differently to treatment. Some people do not have symptoms when their blood sugar is too low. They must depend on blood sugar testing to find out they are too low.

Nighttime low blood sugars

You may experience a low blood sugar night. The low blood sugar might wake you up and your symptoms might be similar to those you have during the day. However, the symptoms may be different. You might have nightmares, sleep poorly, perspire, or feel hot and cold. In the morning you may have a headache, feel nauseated, or feel confused. Notify your doctor if this happens. Check your blood sugar at the time you have the symptoms.

Treatment for a low blood sugar that occurs at night is the same as described earlier.

Your doctor may request that you check a 3:00 a.m. blood sugar 1 to 2 times per week in order to detect any low blood sugars during the night.

Disclaimer: This content is reviewed periodically and is subject to change as new health information becomes available. The information provided is intended to be informative and educational and is not a replacement for professional medical evaluation, advice, diagnosis or treatment by a health care professional.

90,000 The child’s blood sugar dropped. At what sugar level is hospitalization indicated?


A drop in blood sugar (glucose) is called hypoglycemia. This condition causes dysfunction of many body systems.

The brain is especially sensitive to hypoglycemia, since sugar compounds are the main source of energy and nutrition for brain cells. When glucose levels drop very sharply, brain function can be impaired.

Globally, the causes of hypoglycemia are divided into drug-related and non-drug-related.

Basically, a low level of blood glucose occurs in diseases with diabetes mellitus and inadequate therapy for the disease, primarily insulin and other drugs prescribed to patients with diabetes mellitus to lower blood glucose.

Also, hypoglycemia can be caused by other reasons: a violation of the diet (fasting or exclusion from the diet of foods containing carbohydrates, long breaks in food), excessive physical, mental and emotional stress, metabolic disorders, etc.

There is a type of hypoglycemia that occurs in infants in their first year of life. It is caused by foods containing fructose, galactose (milk sugar) or the amino acid lecithin. The result is a decrease in blood sugar some time after eating foods containing these substances.

Symptoms of low blood sugar: pallor of the skin, sweating, irritability, “tearfulness”, restless behavior, weakness, fatigue, trembling, dizziness, headache, nausea, abdominal pain, blurred vision, confusion, anxiety.Glucose deficiency can cause coma, and prolonged hypoglycemia causes irreversible brain damage. Thus, a decrease in blood glucose is a very alarming symptom!

With a glycemic level of 2.2 mmol / l, urgent hospitalization and inpatient treatment are indicated. When the glucose level is 3.0-3.5 mmol / l, the child in consciousness must be drunk fractionally with sweet tea, juice, and the glucose level must be monitored every 15 minutes, if there is no effect, the child loses consciousness and the glucose level does not rise – urgent hospitalization is indicated to the hospital.

Do not self-medicate! The state of hypoglycemia cannot be ignored. The child must be shown to a pediatric endocrinologist, if necessary, undergo an additional examination, choose treatment tactics, develop the principles of proper nutrition and daily regimen.

An experienced children’s endocrinologist Danilycheva Lyubov Ivanovna is attending the Children’s Diagnostic Center!

Be healthy!

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90,000 Diabetes Complications | OneTouch®

What are the complications of diabetes?


Diabetes can lead to complications that affect many organs and systems in the body, including the brain, eyes, heart, kidneys and nerves.Diabetic complications can be long term (chronic) or short term (acute).

Long-term complications occur when blood glucose levels are poorly controlled and remain high for an extended period of time. Keeping your blood glucose levels as close to normal as possible, as well as regular checkups and blood tests, can help slow or prevent long-term complications of diabetes. These include the following:

Eye diseases

Many people with diabetes develop some degree of eye disease (retinopathy) caused by damage to the blood vessels that supply the retina as a result of high blood glucose levels over a period of time.This can lead to impaired vision or blindness. Diabetic eye disease can go far enough before it affects vision, so it is important that people with diabetes get their eyes checked regularly. Early diagnosis and treatment can prevent blindness.

Healthy oral health

People with diabetes have a higher risk of developing gum disease (periodontitis) than people without diabetes. Periodontitis can cause tooth decay and loss and can lead to other complications such as heart disease.Poorly controlled blood glucose levels can lead to infections and diseases of the mouth. Good oral hygiene can help improve overall glucose control, prevent tooth decay and loss, and other diabetic complications.

Cardiovascular diseases

Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of disability and death in people with diabetes. These include angina (chest pain or discomfort), myocardial infarction (heart attack), stroke, peripheral arterial disease (decreased blood flow to the limbs), and congestive heart failure (heart weakness leading to fluid buildup in the lungs and other tissues organism).The factors that increase the risk of developing cardiovascular disease are high blood pressure, high cholesterol and high blood glucose levels (typical in diabetes).

Kidney disease

Diabetes is one of the leading causes of chronic (long-term) kidney disease. It is caused by damage to small blood vessels in the kidneys (a condition called nephropathy) that results in reduced efficiency or complete kidney failure. Controlling blood glucose and blood pressure significantly reduces the risk of diabetic kidney disease.

Complications during pregnancy

Women with any type of diabetes are at risk of several problems during pregnancy: high glucose levels can affect fetal development and put mother and baby at risk of complications during childbirth. High blood glucose levels during pregnancy can lead to changes in the development of the fetus – it can grow oversize and become overweight. This can lead to injury to the baby and mother during childbirth, and to low blood glucose levels (hypoglycemia) in the baby after birth.Babies who are exposed to high blood glucose levels in the womb also have a greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes later in life. Careful monitoring of blood glucose levels during pregnancy is very important. For women diagnosed with diabetes before pregnancy, glucose monitoring and proper control should be started before pregnancy.

Nerve damage

Nerve damage (neuropathy) is the result of prolonged exposure to high blood glucose levels and can damage any nerve in the body.The most common form is peripheral neuropathy, which mainly affects sensory nerves in the legs. This condition can lead to pain, tingling, and numbness. As a result of neuropathy, injuries can go unnoticed, leading to ulcers, serious infections, and, in some cases, can lead to amputations. Nerve damage can also lead to erectile dysfunction (sexual problems in men), as well as problems with digestion, urination, and a number of other bodily functions.

Legs affection

In addition to nerve damage, people with diabetes may have problems with poor circulation in the legs, which results from damage to the blood vessels. These problems increase the risk of developing ulcers, infections, and can lead to amputation. The risk of amputation in people with diabetes can be up to 20 times higher than in those without the disease. However, proper glucose control can prevent a significant proportion of amputations. In view of these risks, it is very important for people with diabetes to regularly check their feet for problems at an early stage.

Short term or acute complications may be associated with low or high blood glucose levels. Complications include hypoglycemia and related crises such as seizures, as well as crises associated with hyperglycemia such as diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) and hyperosmolar hyperglycemic state (HHS). They often come on suddenly and can be life threatening. Fortunately, they can be prevented or you can provide quick help if you and your loved ones know how to act in these cases.

Hypoglycemia: low blood sugar


Hypoglycemia means low blood glucose. It is sometimes called “hypo” and can occur at any time of the day or night. Hypoglycemia occurs when your body doesn’t have enough glucose to use for energy. This usually happens when your blood glucose is 3.9 mmol / L or lower.

Signs and symptoms of low blood sugar include:

  • Sudden, extremely intense hunger
  • Headache
  • Shiver
  • Weakness or fatigue
  • Cold sweat
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Anxiety or nervousness
  • Irritability

What to do if you have low blood sugar:

  • Check your blood sugar to make sure it is 3.9 mmol / L or lower.
  • Apply Rule 15/155:
    • Take 15 g of a fast-acting carbohydrate that contains glucose, for example: a small glass of fruit juice, 3-4 teaspoons (1 tablespoon) of sugar diluted in water, glucose gel or glucose tablets (see label to determine how much corresponds to 15 g).
    • Wait 15 minutes and check your blood sugar again.
    • If your blood sugar remains low:
      • Continue to alternate 15 g glucose and wait 15 minutes before retesting your blood sugar.Do this until it reaches acceptable performance.
  • Do not skip your next meal to avoid triggering a drop in blood sugar again.
  • If symptoms persist, contact your doctor.

If untreated, hypoglycemia can progress to a change in mental state, causing extreme confusion or loss of consciousness and, in some cases, seizures. It’s helpful to know your symptoms of hypoglycemia and be ready to take action quickly, especially if you are taking insulin.Your family and friends are encouraged to know your signs of low blood sugar and how to help you in an emergency if you are unable to take action on your own. Your doctor can help teach your family and friends how to help with diabetes emergencies and how to prepare for them.

Hyperglycemia: high blood glucose


Blood glucose rises when diet, activity level and therapy are poorly balanced: too much food, insufficient physical activity or drug dose.It can also happen when you are not feeling well or under stress. High blood glucose levels increase the risk of infection. And the infection can lead to an even higher rise in blood glucose levels.

Signs of hyperglycemia

Hyperglycemia, or elevated blood glucose, is the main symptom of diabetes, so the symptoms of hyperglycemia and diabetes are the same. These include features such as:

  • Frequent urination
  • Excessive thirst and / or hunger
  • Dry mouth
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Blurred vision
  • Lack of energy and extreme fatigue

What to do if you have high blood sugar:

  • Contact your doctor to see if a change in therapy is required.
  • Measure your blood glucose regularly.
  • Drink plenty of water to flush excess blood sugar in your urine.
  • Practice moderate physical activity.
  • Reduce portions of food at the next meals.

Diabetic ketoacidosis 4 (DKA) occurs when high levels of ketones accumulate in the blood. Ketones are chemicals that are produced when there is a lack of insulin when the body breaks down fats for energy.This is because the body cannot use glucose with little or no insulin and is forced to burn fat. High levels of ketones in the blood act like a poison.

Signs and symptoms of this condition include shortness of breath, rapid breathing or shortness of breath with fruity breath, nausea, vomiting, ketones in the urine or blood, and high blood glucose levels.

Diabetic ketoacidosis is a life-threatening condition that requires immediate treatment.His treatment is usually done in a hospital. If you suspect you have DKA, you need to call an ambulance or go to the nearest hospital.

You can prevent this condition from developing by doing a simple urinalysis for ketones using a test kit available from pharmacies. Avoid physical activity if your blood glucose is over 240 mg / dL and ketone bodies are present in your urine. Talk to your doctor about further monitoring your blood glucose and ketone levels if you find ketones in your urine.

Hyperosmolar hyperglycemic state (HGS) 3 is an emergency condition commonly seen in older people with very high blood glucose levels. It usually develops in the presence of an underlying medical condition, such as pneumonia, urinary tract infection, or other infection, or when the diabetes treatment plan is violated.

HGS causes severe dehydration and, if left untreated, can lead to seizures, coma, and even death.Other signs and symptoms include increased urination, intense thirst, fever, and vision changes.

HGS is a threatening condition that requires immediate treatment. You should call an ambulance or go to the nearest hospital.

To prevent this condition from developing, check your blood glucose regularly and do this more often when you are sick. Talk to your doctor about when and how often you should check your glucose levels while you are sick.

How can you prevent complications of diabetes?


If poorly managed, diabetes can lead to complications, both short-term (acute) and long-term (chronic). Well-planned diabetes management can help prevent diabetes-related health problems. This may include

  • Blood glucose monitoring
  • Proper control of blood pressure and cholesterol levels
  • Regular laboratory tests, eye examinations by an ophthalmologist and doctor’s foot exam for early warning of problems
  • Exploring everything there is to know about how best to manage diabetes, including the following:
    • Healthy Diet Choices
    • Active lifestyle
    • Taking medications as prescribed by a doctor
    • Routine blood glucose measurement
    • Knowledge of how to prevent diabetes emergencies or provide quick help.

2 IDF Diabetes Atlas (Edition 8) (2017). International Diabetes Federation: Brussels, Belgium. Online version May 5, 2018 at http://diabetesatlas.org/IDF_Diabetes_Atlas_8e_interactive_EN/

3 American Diabetes Association. (ADA) Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes – 2018. Diabetes Care 2018; 41, Suppl. 1. Online version May 6, 2018 at http://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/diacare/suppl/2017/12/08/41.Supplement_1.DC1 / DC_41_S1_Combined.pdf

4 American Diabetes Association. (ADA) – DKA and Ketones. Online version dated May 7, 2018 at http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/complications/ketoacidosis-dka.html

5 MedlinePlus. 15/15 Rule. National Institute of Health (NIH) /U.S. Library of Medicine. Bethesda, MD. Online version dated 23 May 2018 at https://medlineplus.gov/ency/imagepages/19815.htm

Prevention of diabetes mellitus in children

Speaking about diabetes, it is important to remember that this metabolic disease is widespread not only among adults, but also among children.Pediatric endocrinology has long occupied a significant niche, but still not all parents know what questions about their child’s health should be addressed to a pediatric endocrinologist.
Why does this disease occur, what symptoms may indicate diabetes, who is at risk, what preventive measures are important to follow in order to keep blood sugar normal.
– What is diabetes mellitus and what effect does it have on the child’s body?
– Diabetes mellitus is a group of diseases that differ in their causes of occurrence, but are united by one symptom – high blood glucose levels.It is the high level of glucose (in everyday life – “blood sugar”) that is the main “damaging” factor for any organism, not only for children.
– Can diabetes be cured?
– This is a chronic disease, therefore, we cannot yet talk about a cure at the present time and at this stage in the development of science.
– What are the measures to prevent diseases of the endocrine system?
– If we are talking in general, about all endocrine diseases, then it is more likely to maintain a healthy lifestyle, which includes not only a varied, nutritious diet, physical activity and daily regimen, but also vaccinations, reducing stress levels, hardening in order to reduce the number of infections.For children in the first year of life, breastfeeding is a very important element in the prevention of endocrine diseases. If we are talking about type 1 diabetes mellitus, which is more typical for childhood, then the methods of primary prevention have not been developed.
– What signs of deterioration in health indicate that parents need to consult a pediatric endocrinologist and what tests need to be taken before an appointment with a medical specialist?
– A pediatric endocrinologist may seek medical attention: violation of height and weight indicators, sexual development, delayed psychomotor development, increase or decrease in blood pressure, heart rhythm disturbances, frequent fractures, fractures with minor trauma.Complicated heredity for endocrine diseases in close relatives can also serve as a reason for visiting an endocrinologist.
If we single out the symptoms of anxiety and an urgent visit to the doctor, these are the symptoms of diabetes: increased thirst, frequent or profuse urination, rapid weight loss against the background of a preserved appetite. With these symptoms, it is imperative to visit a doctor, it may be a district pediatrician who will prescribe the necessary examination for you, before determining blood glucose.In other conditions, the scope of the required examination is determined by the doctor after the examination.

– What influences the development of this disease in children?
– Type 1 diabetes mellitus – a disease in which the cells in the pancreas that produce insulin die. Most often due to an autoimmune process (when your own immunity does not work correctly, which contributes to the destruction of healthy cells). Diabetes mellitus is also associated with a number of genes that determine the predisposition to the development of diabetes, but what is the “trigger point” for the onset of the disease is not fully understood.
Type 2 diabetes mellitus is much less common in childhood – a disease in which enough insulin is produced, but the cells of your own body are not sensitive to it. Type 2 diabetes occurs in people with excess body weight and low physical activity, burdened by heredity. This is where we can carry out diabetes prevention through lifestyle changes.
– Does diabetes always occur in overweight people?
– Of course not. This myth is associated with a large number of people suffering from type 2 diabetes, which occurs due to overweight, other types of diabetes are rarely accompanied by obesity.
– What examinations should be regularly taken in order to be calm for the child’s endocrine system?

– There are no specific examinations, obligatory annual preventive examinations are a reliable method for detecting pathology in children. By order of the Ministry of Health 514n, a child without complaints must be examined by a pediatric endocrinologist at the age of 10,15,16,17 years. It is important to consult a doctor in a timely manner in case of complaints!
– What pattern should be followed to keep blood sugar under control and how often should it be checked?
– Treatment of type 1 diabetes mellitus is a laborious process that includes daily self-monitoring (measuring blood glucose levels 6-10 times a day or more), calculating insulin doses according to individual coefficients, planning meals and physical activity.The child and family must be trained in all management skills.
– Is insulin necessary for diabetes mellitus?
– In type 1 diabetes mellitus, insulin is indispensable, since at the stage of diagnosis, 95% of the cells that produce insulin have died. With type 2 diabetes mellitus, tableted glucose-lowering therapy is possible.

– What is hypoglycemia?
– Hypoglycemia is a decrease in blood sugar levels, one of the critical conditions in diabetes mellitus requiring urgent action, which can be accompanied by a sudden loss of consciousness.Usually hypoglycemia is considered a condition in which blood sugar drops below 3.9 mmol / L.
– What to do when you feel like you have low blood sugar?
– You need to measure your blood sugar with a glucometer (blood glucose using a glucometer ≤ 3.9 mmol / L).
Eat simple carbohydrates at 0.3 g / kg of body weight, with a weight of more than 50 kg – this is 15 grams of carbohydrates and check your blood glucose after 15 minutes.
If the blood glucose level remains ≤ 3.9 mmol / L, then eat 15 g more simple carbohydrates, or 0.3 g / kg of body weight.
Repeat until hypoglycemia has subsided.
If there is a loss of consciousness, then you need to put the person on his side.
It is important not to pour or put sweets or sugary drinks in your mouth!
Call an ambulance 03 or 112 and, if possible, administer glucagon.
– Parting words to parents whose children are faced with this disease.
– For those who are faced with the diagnosis for the first time: “Cheer up, you are not alone! Diabetes can be controlled! Educate with your child on disease management! Do not be afraid to ask a lot and be interested, as you will be the main experts on your child’s diabetes.
And in the endless series of insulin injections, blood glucose measurements, calculating bread units, do not forget about the main thing – about life, it does not only consist of diabetes, look at your child as a person who has a lot of important and interesting things ahead!
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Acute complications in diabetes mellitus

In diabetes mellitus, any type of diabetes, the most common acute complications are hypoglycemia (hypoglycemic coma) and ketoacidotic coma or condition.

Hypoglycemia (hypoglycemic coma)

Hypoglycemia (a decrease in blood glucose less than 3 mmol / l) develops rapidly, sometimes almost suddenly. It is characterized by the following symptoms:

  • Increased sweating
  • Severe weakness, and occurs sharply
  • Shivering in the body
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Hunger

It is worth noting that not all of these symptoms can be combined at once.There may also be some “own” sensations that the patient notes for himself during the course of the illness. For example, tingling and numbness in the nose, tongue, or upper lip. Sometimes, hypoglycemia may not immediately manifest with any symptoms, especially in patients with long-term ongoing diabetes, and this is dangerous. If hypoglycemia is not stopped, then a hypoglycemic coma may develop, when the patient cannot independently take the necessary actions to treat hypoglycemia. So, hypoglycemia must be removed as quickly as possible and it must be done correctly.To quickly increase blood sugar, you need to take fast-digesting carbohydrates: sugar 4-5 pieces, honey, jam, sweet fruit drinks or lemonade in an amount of 200 ml. Important Rule : A diabetic patient receiving anti-hypoglycemic medication should carry easily digestible carbohydrates with them at all times. It should be noted that in such situations it is more convenient to use lump sugar or juice or lemonade. Honey – it is inconvenient to dose, difficult to carry, sweets are difficult to chew (caramel), or they may contain substances that slow down the absorption of carbohydrates (chocolate, soy sweets).

In severe hypoglycemia (numbness with the inability of independent adequate actions or complete loss of consciousness – hypoglycemic coma), the patient cannot help himself. If consciousness is still preserved, you need to drink or feed sweets (see above). In case of coma, call an ambulance.

Recurrent hypoglycemia requires an obligatory visit to a doctor.

Ketoacidotic coma or condition

This condition, on the contrary, occurs with increased sugar.This is an acute complication of the disease due to absolute or pronounced relative insulin deficiency due to inadequate insulin therapy or an increase in insulin demand. Factors provoking the development of ketoacidotic coma:

  • Insufficient dose or missed insulin injection (or taking pill antidiabetic drugs)
  • Cancellation of antihyperglycemic therapy unauthorized
  • Violation of insulin delivery technique
  • Accession of other diseases (infections, trauma, surgery, pregnancy, myocardial infarction, stroke, stress, etc.))
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Taking certain medications – glucocorticosteroids, etc.

The ketoacidotic state and further coma develops gradually, from several hours to several days. Disturbed by pronounced dry mouth, thirst, frequent urination, indicating an increase in diabetes decompensation. Weight loss can be recorded, also due to the uncompensated course of the disease over a period of time.As ketoacidosis progresses, symptoms such as nausea and vomiting appear, which in a patient with diabetes dictate the need for a mandatory study of the acetone content in urine. Patients may complain of severe abdominal pain. A typical clinical symptom of a developing coma is frequent deep breathing (Kussmaul breathing), often with the smell of acetone in the exhaled air. In analyzes, the increase in sugar, as a rule, is more than 15-17 mmol / l.

There are four main positions in the treatment of this condition:

  • insulin therapy;
  • recovery of lost fluid;
  • correction of mineral and electrolyte metabolism;
  • Treatment of coma-provoking diseases and complications of ketoacidosis.

In any case, it is important for the patient to know that long-term decompensation of diabetes must not be allowed and that he must consult his doctor in time.

How blood sugar affects well-being – Wonderzine

Why “high” sugar is dangerous

Eating any food, not only sweet, increases the concentration of glucose in the blood. Normally, its level is from 3.3 to 5.5 mmol / l (when analyzing blood from a finger) and from 4 to 6.1 mmol / l (if blood is taken from a vein). These numbers change throughout the day: for example, as soon as we eat a high-carbohydrate food – say, a bun – the glucose level can rise to 10 mmol / L in just twenty minutes.There is no danger to health in this: this is the so-called alimentary, or associated with food intake, hyperglycemia – a temporary increase in blood glucose. With proper functioning of the pancreas and liver, the indicators will return to normal after a while.

If an increase in glucose levels occurs more often and becomes chronic, then type 2 diabetes mellitus may develop. This is a serious disease – it leads to disturbances in the functioning of the heart and blood vessels, kidneys, eyes and other organs.Too high blood sugar levels are very dangerous in early pregnancy – they dramatically increase the risk of congenital heart disease in a baby. Thirst, frequent trips to the toilet “small”, heart problems, cramps in the legs, itching, headache or dizziness, fatigue, blurred vision (“fog” in front of the eyes) – a set of symptoms indicating an excess of glucose in the blood is wide enough.

On the other hand, sugar is indispensable. More than half of the glucose is used to meet the body’s energy needs.The rest is used to build various structures – cell membranes, enzymes, components of the immune system – and is stored in the muscles and liver. A blood glucose level below normal is called hypoglycemia – it can manifest as weakness or light-headedness. With mild hypoglycemia, it is enough to drink a cup of sweet tea. In more severe cases, fainting or even hypoglycemic coma may occur, requiring urgent medical attention.

It is not uncommon for people to experience hypoglycemia during exercise – for example, if a person decides to exercise in the morning when blood sugar is low and has forgotten to have breakfast before.In this case, experts advise to reduce the load, for example, reduce the number of repetitions, or stop training altogether. To avoid these conditions, it is important to eat one and a half to two hours before training. During the lesson, it is important to avoid dehydration, the symptoms of which (dizziness, darkening of the eyes, tinnitus) are often similar to those of hypoglycemia.

90,000 Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)

What is it?

Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) occurs when your blood sugar or glucose is too low.It causes tremors, anxiety, clammy skin, irritability, headache, palpitations, and hunger. Low sugar levels are common in people with diabetes, which can be caused by diabetes medication, nutritional deficiencies, or exercise. Such a pathology can be a life-threatening condition for diabetics and provoke convulsions, coma, and even death. Certain medical problems, including cancer, medications, tumors, excess alcohol consumption, and hereditary factors, can lead to low blood sugar levels in people who do not have diabetes.In some cases, a condition called reactive hypoglycemia develops, which causes a drop in blood sugar four hours after a meal. Treatment depends on what caused the decline. In diabetics, this condition can be prevented by regularly monitoring blood sugar levels and keeping them in the normal range. The therapy of concomitant diseases also helps to solve the problem. Reactive hypoglycemia can be managed by eating small meals with a break of 3 hours.

What to expect?

Early symptoms of low blood sugar include tremors, fatigue, anxiety, hunger, and irritability. At the first sign of such a condition, a diabetic should eat 15 grams of carbohydrates, for example, 1 tablespoon of sugar (honey) or drink half a glass of fruit juice. If your blood glucose remains below 70 mg / dL after 15 minutes, you should consume another serving of carbohydrates. Next, you should continue to eat 15 grams every 15 minutes until the glucose level exceeds 70 mg / dL.A marked decrease in blood sugar can provoke confusion, severe drowsiness, fainting, and coma. Anyone with these symptoms should see a doctor immediately. A large-scale diabetes management study has shown that people with diabetes who have a drop in blood sugar have a 50% risk of having a seizure recurrence and a 25% risk of developing a third seizure within the next 24 hours.


Millions of people have episodic or mild drops in blood sugar, but people with diabetes who take insulin and other blood sugar lowering drugs are at higher risk of developing this condition.


Treatment includes:

  • small amounts of carbohydrates;
  • determination of the effect of the drugs taken and their timely adjustment;
  • changes in the diet;
  • Treatment of any concomitant diseases.

What can you do yourself?

People with diabetes can control the decrease in blood sugar by checking the level regularly and quickly correcting the situation with food consumption until the level returns to normal values.People with reactive hypoglycemia can prevent the problem by eating small meals every three hours, exercising regularly, eating a healthy diet, and avoiding high sugar foods on an empty stomach.

How does it get worse?

Taking too much insulin or diabetes medications, poor nutrition, refusing to eat regular food, overtraining without adjusting the insulin dose or diet, exacerbate the manifestations of the pathology.

When to see a doctor?

If symptoms of low blood sugar levels are detected without a known cause, consult a doctor. Symptoms include:

  • anxiety;
  • sweating;
  • drowsiness;
  • trembling;
  • headaches;
  • heartbeat;
  • confusion of consciousness; 90 080
  • irritability;
  • skin stickiness;
  • feeling of hunger.

Very low sugar levels can cause blackouts, seizures, coma and death.If you have diabetes and your blood sugar continues to fall, you should seek medical advice because your treatment plan may need to be adjusted. If symptoms of low glucose do not improve with fast-digesting food or worsen, medical attention is required immediately.

What to ask a doctor?

  • What caused the drop in sugar?
  • Should the dosage be changed?
  • What can you do if this condition recurs?
  • Should I check my blood sugar more often?
  • Could this be something other than a drop in blood sugar?

Making a Diagnosis

A doctor can diagnose low blood sugar based on medical history, physical examination, glucose tests, and other blood tests.

Risk factors

  • Diabetes.
  • Medicines for diabetes.
  • Drunkenness.
  • Taking medications such as beta blockers.

How I live with type 1 diabetes

The only time I allowed myself to cry about my bitter fate was in the hospital. I was under an IV, the doctors did not answer my questions, and my mother was sitting next to her, who had no face. First of all, I cried out of despair: diabetes is forever.And then also from the fact that I have two arms, two legs, I seem to have a head, and my mother, a 20-year-old dildo with a higher education, calms me down. And that a week ago I was eating strawberries from the garden by both cheeks, and now, together with 90-year-old grannies, at a signal, I go to give injections. And so now it will be for the rest of my life. There will also be headaches and shaking hands from low sugar levels. And at least 4 times a day I will pierce my finger and squeeze a drop of blood onto a special strip.Your fingers will hurt. The skin on them – dry and peel off. Perhaps, after thousands of such punctures, they will lose sensitivity. The injections will bruise my stomach. Sometimes I will hit right into the nerve endings, and white spots will appear in front of my eyes for a few moments from pain. And I will often have a bunch of tests. And, in the end, I will never be able to become a firefighter (okay, I didn’t really want to).

But in less than an hour, I got tired of whining.It became funny and ashamed. The fact of the matter is that I have two arms, two legs and a head, it seems, too. So, we should not cry, but think with this very head. And to build your way so as not to have diabetes, but to live with it. This is difficult , and I still do not always succeed. But I try .

Situations are, frankly, absurd. For example, I really like going to rock concerts. And, of course, I can’t go to the conditional Park Live without syringes and a glucometer.I can imagine what the guards think every time when, during a search at the entrance, spare needles fall out of my purse. So far it has been enough: to explain why I need syringes in a special case, I have time before I am accused of drug addiction. By the way, “insulins”, which are often used by those who have problems with prohibited substances, are outdated among progressive diabetics.