Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Diabetes Health Center

Font Size
A
A
A

Hypoglycemia and Diabetes

Hypoglycemia Treatment in Diabetes continued...

Your doctor may determine that you are taking too much insulin that peaks toward the evening to morning hours. In that case, he or she may decrease your insulin dose or change the time when your last dose of insulin is given.

Other things that you can do to help yourself get through the low blood sugar episode start by consuming 15 grams of a fast-acting carbohydrate such as :

  • Take two or three glucose tablets (available at pharmacy).
  • Take one tube of glucose gel (available at pharmacy).
  • Chew four to six pieces of hard candy (not sugar-free).
  • Drink 1/2 cup fruit juice.
  • Drink 1 cup skim milk.
  • Drink 1/2 cup soft drink (not sugar-free).
  • Eat 1 tablespoon honey (placed under your tongue for rapid absorption into the bloodstream).
  • Eat 1 tablespoon table sugar.
  • Eat 1 tablespoon corn syrup.

Fifteen minutes after you have eaten a sugar-containing food, check your blood sugar again. If you do not feel better and your blood sugar is still less than 70 mg/dL (milligrams per deciliter), eat another serving of one of the foods listed above. Repeat these steps until your sugar normalizes.

Eat a carbohydrate and protein snack such as peanut butter crackers or cheese and crackers, or a half of a sandwich.

Keep a record of the date and time of day your reaction occurred and what you did. This can help your doctor look for a pattern and help you adjust your medications.

Call your health care provider if you have more than one unexplained hypoglycemic reaction in a week.

Hypoglycemia may cause you to pass out. If so, you will need someone to give you a glucagon injection. Glucagon is a prescription medicine that raises blood sugar and may be needed with severe hypoglycemia. It is important that your family members and/or friends know how to give the injection in case you have a low blood sugar reaction. Talk with your health care provider about the use of glucagon.

If you witness a loved one suffering from a severe hypoglycemic reaction, call 911 or take them to the nearest hospital for treatment. Do not try to give an unconscious person food, fluids, or insulin as they may choke.

Note: It is very dangerous to drive during a low blood sugar reaction. If you are driving and you experience symptoms of hypoglycemia, safely pull off the road and eat a glucose-containing (sugary) food. Wait at least 15 minutes and repeat if necessary. Eat a protein and carbohydrate source (such as peanut butter crackers or cheese and crackers) before continuing to your destination. It is important to keep a sugar source, a protein and carbohydrate source in your car at all times for emergencies.

WebMD Medical Reference

Is This Normal? Get the Facts Fast!

Check Your Blood Sugar Level Now
What type of diabetes do you have?
Your gender:

Get the latest Diabetes newsletter delivered to your inbox!


or
Answer:
Low
0-69
Normal
70-130
High
131+

Your level is currently

If the level is below 70 and you are experiencing symptoms such as shaking, sweating or difficulty thinking, you will need to raise the number immediately. A quick solution is to eat a few pieces of hard candy or 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey. Recheck your numbers again in 15 minutes to see if the number has gone up. If not, repeat the steps above or call your doctor.

People who experience hypoglycemia several times in a week should call their health care provider. It's important to monitor your levels each day so you can make sure your numbers are within the range. If you are pregnant always consult with your health care provider.

Congratulations on taking steps to manage your health.

However, it's important to continue to track your numbers so that you can make lifestyle changes if needed. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

Your level is high if this reading was taken before eating. Aim for 70-130 before meals and less than 180 two hours after meals.

Even if your number is high, it's not too late for you to take control of your health and lower your blood sugar.

One of the first steps is to monitor your levels each day. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

Did You Know Your Lifestyle Choices
Affect Your Blood Sugar?

Use the Blood Glucose Tracker to monitor
how well you manage your blood sugar over time.

Get Started

This tool is not intended for women who are pregnant.

Start Over

Step:  of 

Today on WebMD

Woman holding cake
Slideshow
feet
Slideshow
 
man organizing pills
Slideshow
Close up of eye
Slideshow
 

Woman serving fast food from window
Video
Can Vinegar Treat Diabetes
Video
 
Middle aged person
Tool
are battery operated toothbrushes really better
Video
 

Prediabetes How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
Article
type 2 diabetes
Slideshow
 
food fitness planner
Tool
Are You at Risk for Dupuytrens Contracture
Article
 

WebMD Special Sections