Find happy medium in blood sugar controlBy
Avoiding the highs and lows is crucial in maintaining good blood sugar control. Lowering blood sugar levels is a common goal for children and adults with diabetes, but extreme lows can bring dangerous complications.
Hyperglycemia means your blood sugar is high, for most people this is 200 or higher. Hypoglycemia means your blood sugar is low, for most people this is 70 or lower. Each extreme carries symptoms that people with diabetes and family members should learn and be able to recognize as they develop.
Diabetes educator Elaine Blackwood urges parents and caregivers to be on alert because children and adults can be prone to the spikes and crashes of diabetes. “All people with diabetes should learn about the highs and lows as well as how to treat them,” she said adding that insulin pumps may not eliminate this concern, but it “helps to limit the amount of times it may happen.”
- You may have no symptoms or you might experience:
- Increased thirst
- Increased need to urinate
- Increased tiredness
- Blurred vision
If You Feel Symptoms
- ALWAYS check your blood sugar right away. If it’s too high:
- Drink water or other sugar-free liquids to stay hydrated.
- If you take insulin, you may need an extra dose. Ask your healthcare provider for instructions about taking extra insulin.
- Check at least every four hours to make sure your blood glucose is doing down. Call your healthcare provider if it doesn’t go down after two checks, or if symptoms get worse.
Low Blood Glucose
- A drop in blood sugar can happen very quickly. You might experience:
- Sweating or cold, clammy skin
- Dizziness, shakiness
- Hard, fast heartbeat or headache
- Confusion or irritability
If You Feel Symptoms
- ALWAYS check your blood sugar right away. If it’s too low:
- Eat or drink 15 grams of fast-acting sugar. This could be three to four glucose tablets or ½ cup (4 oz) of fruit juice or regular soda (not diet).
- Check your blood glucose again after 15 minutes. If it’s still low, repeat Step 1. Check again in 15 minutes. If it’s still too low, call your provider right away.
- Once your blood glucose rises, eat a small snack if your next planned meal is more than half an hour away.
Diabetes Management & Supplies offers insulin pump training and accredited diabetes education services. For more information on specific insulin pump needs or to enroll in group or individual sessions, call our Education Department at 1-888-738-7929 or email an educator at email@example.com.