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Symptoms Of Hyperglycemia In Type 1 & Type 2 Diabetes — an article on the Smart Living Network
December 14, 2007 at 4:38 AMComments: 0 Faves: 0

Symptoms Of Hyperglycemia In Type 1 & Type 2 Diabetes


What Is Hyperglycemia?

Hyperglycemia means high glucose levels in the blood. Hyperglycemia can occur when there is too much or not enough insulin in the body, or if the body is unable to use insulin properly.

What are the Complications Associated with Hyperglycemia?

Hyperglycemia can cause the following problems, so it is important to know the symptoms of hyperglycemia:

  • Damage to nerves
  • Blood vessel damage
  • Organ damage
  • Eye problems
  • Ketoacidosis leading to death

What Symptoms Should I Watch For?

Symptoms of hyperglycemia:

  • Excessive thirstiness
  • Excessive urination
  • Headaches
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Blurry vision
  • Fatigue
  • Sudden unexplained weight loss
  • Blood glucose level higher than 180mg/dL
  • Ketoacidosis, or diabetic coma

What Are The Long-Term Effects of Hyperglycemia?

If hyperglycemia is left untreated, the following problems will occur:

  • Infections of the skin and vagina
  • Cuts or sores heal very slowly
  • Decrease in vision
  • Nerve damage, which results in:
  • Cold or painful feet
  • Hair loss
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Constipation or diarrhea

What Causes Hyperglycemia?

Hyperglycemia is caused by an imbalance in insulin levels. In diabetics, this can be caused by eating too much, not exercising enough, not giving yourself enough insulin (in the case of type 1 diabetics), or your body not producing enough insulin (in the case of type 2 diabetics). Stress can also cause hyperglycemia. Physical stress, such as illness can cause hyperglycemia. However, emotional or mental stress is also a common culprit.

How Can I prevent Hyperglycemia?

Usually, hyperglycemia can be prevented or managed. Regardless of your diabetes type, doing the following will reduce the chances of developing hyperglycemia:

  • Keep track of how many carbohydrates you consume
  • Get enough exercise
  • Monitor your blood glucose levels regularly

What Should I Do If I Think I Have Hyperglycemia?

If you think you have hyperglycemia, you should:

  • Check your blood glucose level.
  • If it is high, but not above 240mg/dL, you will probably be able to lower it by exercising regularly.
  • You should also drink lots of water, which will help flush out excess glucose.
  • Talk to your health practitioner about adjusting your medication to better control your blood glucose.

What about Ketoacidosis, or Diabetic Coma?

  • Ketoacidosis occurs when your body is lacking insulin. Since the body requires insulin to break down glucose, and glucose is the body's primary fuel, if there is not enough insulin available, the body must find another source of energy.
  • This source of energy is fat. The body will begin to break down fat to use as energy in place of glucose. This might seem like a great way to lose weight, but it actually is very bad for the body.
  • When the body uses fats as energy, ketones are produced as waste products. Usually these are secreted in the urine, but if too many are produced, the body cannot keep up with them and ketoacidosis results.
  • Ketoacidosis is a very dangerous, life-threatening condition.

The following symptoms indicate that a state of ketoacidosis, or a diabetic coma, may be imminent:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Fruity-smelling breath
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Excessive dry mouth

If you think you are going into a diabetic coma, seek your health practitioner's help immediately. Sources

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