Diabetes is a condition marked by high blood sugar. But sometimes diabetes can cause a person’s blood sugar levels to fall too low. That’s called hypoglycemia, and it isn’t healthy for you.
Why it matters
Hypoglycemia can be dangerous. In severe cases, low blood sugar can cause you to pass out, have a seizure or even be in a coma.
You may be more likely than other people with diabetes to have hypoglycemia if you take insulin or certain other diabetes medicines. It’s also more common among older adults.
Spot the signs
Fortunately, you may be able to recognize low blood sugar in time to treat it before it gets worse. The warning signs of hypoglycemia can include feeling shaky, hungry, tired, dizzy or confused. You might sweat, feel weak and have a headache. Or you might have blurred vision and a fast heartbeat.
You can get low blood sugar while you’re sleeping. This can cause you to cry out in your sleep and to have nightmares.
If you have any of these symptoms, check your blood sugar right away. If it’s below 70 mg/dL, you may have low blood sugar.
Ask your doctor how to treat low blood sugar. The steps involve:
- Eating or drinking something that has carbohydrates. That might include glucose tablets or gels, hard candy or jelly beans, fruit juice, or a spoonful of honey.
- Checking your blood sugar again.
The goal is to get your blood sugar back to a healthy range for you.
Be in the know about glucose control
Learn more about managing blood sugar here.