Hypoglycemia is the medical term for low blood sugar and is generally only a worry for insulin-dependent diabetics. Knowing how to identify and treat the symptoms of hypoglycemia will allow you to seek treatment when necessary and to see a doctor for further information. If you aren’t aware of the symptoms and you allow hypoglycemia to continue untreated, you could be putting yourself at a great risk for your health.
The most commonly-reported symptom of hypoglycemia is fatigue, which can occur in varying intensities. If you find that you are lethargic for a large portion of the day or if you find yourself napping more often than usual, you could be suffering from low blood sugar, especially when paired with other symptoms.
Patients suffering from hypoglycemia also often experience nervousness or even paranoia. They may find themselves fidgeting more than usual or startling easily. This is most often coupled with “bad feelings” about seemingly insignificant occurrences.
Low blood sugar may cause your hands, feet, legs or other body parts to tremble involuntarily.
If you find that you are suffering from increased frequency in headaches, you may have hypoglycemia. Often, the headaches will disappear after you’ve had something to eat or drink that contains sugar. Monitor your headaches and keep a journal detailing the times of day in which they occur and how quickly they fade after eating.
An increased tendency to get hungry throughout the day is often indicative of hypoglycemia. Patients have reported that you can ease the hunger pains by eating several times each day, consuming only 200-300 calories per meal. This will allow you to get food in your stomach more often without the risk of gaining weight.
People who suffer from hypoglycemia also report episodes of confusion and memory loss. It will usually go away within an hour or two, but these episodes can be disconcerting. They may be accompanied by perspiration, a rapid heart beat and troubled vision. All of these symptoms mean that you need to see a doctor as quickly as possible.
Often, those who suffer from hypoglycemia will faint if they go too long between meals. If they don’t pass out entirely, they may suffer dizziness or double-vision. Hallucinations are not unheard of, but not common either. If you have an episode involving fainting, you should have your blood sugar tested immediately.
Another symptom of hypoglycemia is insomnia, which may not be present every night. You might feel inclined to sleep more during the day but be unable to fall asleep at night, combined with night sweats and perhaps even heart palpitations.
If your symptoms aren’t severe, you should do your best to find a drink or a snack that contains sugar. The symptoms should alleviate temporarily, at least long enough to get to a doctor. In severe cases, a patient may go into hypoglycemic shock, which can lead to a coma or even death. Make sure that you are following your doctor’s orders concerning your diet and glucose intake.