Low Blood SugarLow blood sugar or hypoglycemia is a condition when you have extremely low level of the sugar in your blood. Since sugar is the main source of energy in your brain, inadequate supply of sugar may cause behavior changes, anxiety, confusion, headache and vision impairment. Other symptoms of low blood sugar may include weakness, paleness of the skin, tremors, irregular or rapid pulse, excessive perspiration and hunger.
CausesOne of the causes of low blood sugar is diabetes. In case of diabetes the patient uses insulin to regulate blood sugar. If you take too much insulin, it can result in extremely low blood sugar. Other medications prescribed as treatment for diabetes, if they are not adequately used, can cause your blood sugar level to decrease. There are also a lot of other causes of low blood sugar which are not related to diabetes. If you are on a diet and you eat very small meals you increase the risk of decreasing your blood sugar. Skipping meals or not eating for a long time can also cause low blood sugar. Fasting can cause blood sugar to drop as well. If you did more physical exercises than usual, the level of sugar in your blood may decrease, particularly if you have not eaten enough. Excessive alcohol consumption may cause too much insulin which can further lead to decreased blood sugar level. This is especially dangerous in people with diabetes. Certain diseases and disorders can cause low blood sugar. Such disorders include liver or kidney failure, pituitary gland disorder, severe infections, anorexia, tumor of the pancreas, Cushing’s syndrome and Addison’s disease. Medications, such as beta blockers can also cause your blood sugar to drop.
TreatmentThe treatment of low blood sugar depends on the severity of the symptoms and underlying cause. In case of sudden drops of sugar caused by starvation or improper food intake you can eat something sweet or drink some fruit juice. If the symptoms are severe you may need to call emergency help in order to receive an injection. If your low blood sugar level is a consequence of some disease, you will be treated for particular underlying cause.
PreventionIn case you have diabetes, you should be careful how you use your medications. In case you are in good health, you should not skip meals or do exhausting exercises, especially if you are not an athlete. Eating before consuming alcohol is also recommended, in order to reduce the risk of lowering your blood sugar.