How Your Body Regulates Blood Pressure
A similar set of processes apply to maintaining a healthy blood pressure level. In many ways, keeping your blood pressure in a good range is even more critical than keeping your blood glucose in a good range. Your body has a myriad of ways to make more blood sugar as well as making alternative sources of energy like ketones. But we dont have any way to make more blood pressure. The body can protect blood glucose levels much better than it can protect blood pressure. If we are experiencinglow blood volume, we cant add more instantly. If we dont have enough blood, we will pass out and this is very dangerous to the brain and body long term.
With limited options for raising blood pressure, the body relies on the same hormones that get activated when blood glucose is lowcatecholamine, or adrenalin, hormonesto affect this change. Catecholamines tighten up our blood vessels, making it harder for the heart to pump the blood through our arteries, which raises blood pressure.
People with, a condition in which blood pressure is elevated, dont lack the ability to control their blood pressure. But like the person with diabetes, their sensors are impaired and their response to high or low blood pressure isnt always on the mark.
What If I Have Severe Low Blood Glucose And Cant Treat Myself
Glucagona hormone that raises blood glucose levelsis the best way to treat severely low blood glucose. Available as an injection or a nasal spray, glucagon will quickly raise your blood glucose level. Your doctor can prescribe you a glucagon kit for use in case of an emergency.
If your blood glucose level drops very low, you wont be able to treat it by yourself. Be prepared to address severely low blood glucose by
- talking with your doctor or health care team about when and how to use a glucagon emergency kit. If you have an emergency kit, regularly check the date on the package to make sure it hasnt expired.
- teaching your family, friends, and coworkers when and how to give you glucagon. Tell them to call 911 right away after giving you glucagon or if you dont have a glucagon emergency kit with you.
- wearing a medical alert identification bracelet or pendant. A medical alert ID tells other people that you have diabetes and need care right away. Getting prompt care can help prevent the serious problems that low blood glucose levels can cause.
Treatments For Diabetic Coma
If you go into a diabetic coma, you need emergency medical help. Let your loved ones, friends, and co-workers know that if you pass out, they need to call 911 right away and let first responders know you have diabetes.
The type of treatment for a diabetic coma depends on whether your blood sugar level is too high or too low and the exact reason for the level. If itâs too high, you may get IV fluids and potassium, sodium, or phosphate to treat dehydration, insulin to help your tissues absorb sugar, and treatment for any underlying infection. If your blood sugar is too low, you may get a glucagon injection or dextrose.
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How To Test For Ketones
You can use a urine test strip or blood ketone meter and ketone test strip to test for ketones at home. Testing either urine or blood is important, but when possible, a blood test is preferred because it gives you and your care team more precise information about your ketone levels. Because urine may have been in the bladder for some time, the results from these tests may show levels that are either higher or lower than the ketone levels that are actually circulating in your body. It is also very important to know that urine test trips degrade over time, so if you are using this method, you need to look at expiration dates carefully.
Your diabetes care team can give you specific directions about when you should check for ketones, but in general, you should check for them when your blood glucose is 240 mg/dL or higher. You should also check for ketones if you notice any of the DKA symptoms listed above or if you are sick it is possible to have ketones while your blood glucose levels are within range .
At-home urine test strips will change color to show the level of ketones in the urine. They typically report results as negative, trace, small, moderate or large. Blood ketone meters will provide a number that indicates the ketone levels. The following ranges are generally used:
Being Extra Thirsty And Having To Urinate More Than Usual
This is a common but not-so-obvious sign of blood sugar that is too high: feeling really thirsty and needing to drink more than usual. Excessive urination, known as polyuria, occurs when glucose builds up in your blood, and your kidneys begin working harder to get rid of the extra glucose, says Zanini. If your kidneys cant keep up and adjust blood sugar so that it returns to a normal level, the excess sugar is flushed out of your body through urine, she adds. You may become dehydrated and get dizzy.
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Questions Your Doctor May Ask To Determine Vasovagal Syncope
- How long were you unconscious?
- Were you confused and disoriented when you woke up?
- Place two fingers under your jaw, as shown in the image. How is the rhythm of the heartbeat?
- Do you sometimes stare off into space with no recollection of doing so?
- After you woke up, did your muscles feel weak?
Self-diagnose with our free Buoy Assistant if you answer yes on any of these questions.
What Causes High Blood Sugar Levels
Managing diabetes is like a three-way balancing act because you have to watch:
All three need to be balanced. If any one of these is off, blood sugar levels can be too. In general, higher than normal blood glucose levels can be caused by:
- not taking your diabetes medicine when you’re supposed to or not taking the right amounts
- not following the meal plan
- not getting enough exercise
- having an illness, like the flu
- taking other kinds of medicines that affect how your diabetes medicines work
A single high blood sugar reading usually isn’t cause for alarm it happens to everyone with diabetes from time to time. But if you have high blood sugar levels a lot, let your parents and your diabetes health care team know. Insulin or meal plans may need adjusting, or you may have an equipment issue, like an insulin pump that isn’t working right. Whatever the case, make sure you get help so you can get your blood sugar levels back under control.
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Vasovagal Syncope As A Cause Of Dizziness
Vasovagal syncope is a common cause of dizziness, lightheadedness, and fainting. The vagus nerve is overstimulated and causes the bodys blood vessels to dilate and the heart to slow down. This anti-adrenaline effect decreases the ability of the heart to pump blood upward toward the brain. Without blood flow, the brain turns off. In Victorian England, young ladies sensibilities were easily offended causing a vasovagal episode called a swoon.
Some people faint at the sight of blood. Some parents faint when their child gets immunized. Some medical students faint at their first autopsy. Many types of emotional and physical stressors can overstimulate the vagus nerve, causing dizziness, lightheadedness, and at times fainting .
Fainting is not normal. If a person is unconscious, activate the emergency medical system , and seek medical care.
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Slurred Speech And Clumsiness
Your sugar-starved brain may change the way you sound. Slurred speech is a common symptom associated with blood sugar levels that drop below 40 mg/dL, according to University of Michigan Health Systems. Combined with clumsiness another sign of low blood sugar you may seem as though youve had a few too many cocktails, even if you havent touched a drop, according to the National Health Service.
For more on managing low blood sugar, check out Diabetes Dailys article How to Treat Lows Without Sabotaging Your Diet!
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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.
How Well Does Metformin Lower Blood Sugar
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What Causes Low Blood Glucose
- Symptoms occur when blood glucose levels fall below 70 mg/dl a condition known as hypoglycemia.
- In most cases, low blood glucose results from overtreatment: Either taking too much diabetes medication or not eating enough food. Higher doses of medicine than the person actually requires can also lead to hypoglycemia.
- People who aim for too-low values on their A1C test tend to experience more frequent drops in blood glucose.
- Vigorous exercise doesn’t just burn calories, it also burns blood glucose! Hypoglycemia can occur unless blood glucose levels are carefully monitored during and after exercise.
- Not eating on a regular basis can deprive the body of glucose and make it difficult to prevent hypoglycemia. Eat balanced meals throughout the day and always keep a snack on hand.
Sudden Drop In Blood Pressure
The autonomic nervous system helps the body regulate the shift in blood pressure when we stand up. As we get older, this system may deteriorate, causing a temporary drop in blood pressure when we standknown as orthostatic hypotensionresulting in lightheadedness. This may be a long-term problem, but there are medications to treat it, such as midodrine and fludrocortisone , so this too warrants a trip to your doctor.
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What Are The Complications Of Low Blood Glucose
Mild-to-moderate low blood glucose can be easily treated. But severely low blood glucose can cause serious complications, including passing out, coma, or death.
Repeated episodes of low blood glucose can lead to
- high blood glucose levels, if worry or fear of low blood glucose keeps you from taking the medicines you need to manage your diabetes8
- hypoglycemia unawareness, a condition in which you dont notice any symptoms of low blood glucose until your blood glucose level has dropped very low
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. Its important to know your signs. Common symptoms may include:
If youve had low blood sugar without feeling or noticing symptoms , you may need to check your blood sugar more often to see if its 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 . If you dont 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 its low. This is very important to do before driving or being physically active.
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What Is A Diabetes
Diabetes-related coma is a life-threatening emergency that can happen to you if you have diabetes. In a diabetes-related coma, youre unconscious and unable to respond to your environment. Youre either suffering from high blood glucose or low blood glucose . You need immediate medical attention if you go into a diabetes-related coma.
Foods That Can Cause Vertigo
Salty foods including chips, pretzels, salted nuts, canned foods, soups, deli meats, pastas, sauces, baking soda, condiments, pizza, baking powder, seasonings, frozen meals, pickles, salad dressings, and cheese can all trigger vertigo. Sodium causes body fluid imbalance. It results in fluid retention in your body and leads to build up of pressure in your inner ear resulting in vertigo. Hence, a diet to prevent vertigo should have very low amount of salt. People suffering from Meniere s disease, which is major cause of vertigo, should consume only 120 mg of salt daily.
2. Sugar Substitutes and Sugar
Foods that have high sugar content such as honey, ice cream, chocolate, maple syrup, dates, jams, jellies, cream, cookies, juices, donuts, cakes, processed snacks, and candy may cause central vertigo. One of the major causes of central vertigo is deficiency of oxygen to the brain. Foods rich in sugar increase blood sugar and blood pressure, though temporarily however, in such condition, blood requires more time to reach brain. This creates a deficiency of oxygen in the brain and cause vertigo. Sugar substitutes such as aspartame may result in various diseases including vertigo.
3. Fatty Foods
4. Foods Rich in Tyramine
5. Alcoholic Beverages
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Do You Know Why Blood Sugar Levels Rise After Eating
New Delhi: Right after we finish eating, blood sugar spikes occur when glucose, a simple sugar builds up in the bloodstream.
Those who suffer from diabetes would experience a sudden spike in their blood sugar since their bodies cannot use glucose properly.
According to Healthline, the body creates blood sugar by digesting some food into sugar that circulates in the bloodstream. Blood sugar is used for energy. The sugar that isnt needed to fuel your body right away gets stored in cells for later use.
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Experts say that since too much sugar in the blood can be harmful, it can lead to a lot of health issues, including deadly diseases of the heart, kidneys, eyes, and blood vessels.
Symptoms of hyperglycemia typically begin when your blood glucose goes above 250 milligrams per deciliter . Symptoms can worsen the longer its untreated.
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Overdose Of Diabetes Medication
A common cause of hypoglycaemia is taking too much insulin for your current needs. Insulin is a medication that helps control your blood glucose levels. Its commonly used to treat type 1 diabetes and is also recommended for some people with type 2 diabetes.
A fall in blood glucose levels can also occur after taking too much oral hypoglycaemia medication, such as sulphonylurea, which causes a release of insulin. This medication is often used to lower blood glucose levels in people with type 2 diabetes.
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Dont Drive When You Have Low Blood Sugar
Its dangerous. If youre driving and you have hypoglycemia symptoms, pull off the road, check your blood sugar, and eat a sugary food. Wait at least 15 minutes, check your blood sugar, and repeat these steps if needed. Eat a protein and carbohydrate source before you drive on. Be prepared. Keep a sugar source, such as glucose tablets, in your car at all times for emergencies.
Treating Low Blood Glucose If You Take Medicines That Slow Down Digestion
Some diabetes medicines slow down the digestion of carbohydrates to keep blood glucose levels from rising too high after you eat. If you develop low blood glucose while taking these medicines, you will need to take glucose tablets or glucose gel right away. Eating or drinking other sources of carbohydrates wont raise your blood glucose level quickly enough.
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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.
Fainting: What Makes You Faint?
- American Diabetes Association: “Hypoglycemia .”
- American Heart Association: “Syncope .”
- AsthmaSymptoms.org: “Fainting — A Serious Symptom of Asthma.”
- Boston College Alcohol and Drug Education Program: “Blacking Out Vs. Passing Out.”
- Child Neurology Foundation: “Breath-Holding Spells.”
- Emergency Medicine Journal: “Syncope And Breath Holding.”
- Encyclopaedia Britannica: “Syncope.”
- Mayo Clinic: “Vasovagal syncope,” “Dehydration.”
- Medscape: “Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity.”