Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier
WebMD

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started
My Medicine
WebMD

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion
    WebMD

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community
    WebMD

    Community

    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Diabetes Health Center

Select An Article

When Your Blood Sugar Gets Too Low

Font Size
A
A
A

People with diabetes get hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) when their bodies don't have enough sugar to use as fuel.

It can happen for several reasons, including diet, some medications and conditions, and exercise.

Recommended Related to Diabetes

Diabetes Complications

If it is not controlled, diabetes can cause a host of complications that can affect nearly every organ in the body. Diabetes complications include: Heart disease Stroke Kidney disease Nerve damage Eye damage Digestion problems Erectile dysfunction Skin problems Infection Dental problems

Read the Diabetes Complications article > >

If you get hypoglycemia, write down the date and time when it happened and what you did. Share your record with your doctor, so she can look for a pattern and adjust your medications.

Call your doctor if you have more than one unexplained low blood sugar reaction in a week.

Symptoms

Most people feel symptoms of hypoglycemia when their blood sugar is 70 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) or lower.

Each person with diabetes may have different symptoms of hypoglycemia. You'll learn to spot yours.

Early symptoms include:

Without treatment, you might get more severe symptoms, including:

Diabetes Drugs Linked to Hypoglycemia

Ask your doctor if any of your medicines can cause low blood sugar.

Insulin treatment can cause low blood sugar, and so can a type of diabetes medications called "sulfonylureas."

Commonly used sulfonylureas include:

 

Older, less common sulfonlyureas tend to cause low blood sugar more often than some of the newer ones. Examples of older drugs include:

You can also get low blood sugar if you drink alcohol or take allopurinol (Zyloprim), aspirin, Benemid,probenecid (Probalan), or warfarin (Coumadin) with diabetes medications.

You shouldn't get hypoglycemia if you take alpha-glucosidase inhibitors, biguanides (such as metformin), and thiazolidinediones alone, but it can happen when you take them with sulfonylureas or insulin.

Diet and Hypoglycemia

You can get low blood sugar if you take too much insulin for the amount of carbohydrates you eat or drink.

For instance, it can happen:

  • After you eat a meal that has a lot of simple sugars
  • If you miss a snack or don't eat a full meal
  • If you eat later than usual
  • If you drink alcohol without eating any food

Don't skip meals if you have diabetes, particularly if you're taking diabetes medications.

1 | 2 | 3
Next Article:

Today on WebMD

Diabetic tools
Symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and more.
woman flexing muscles
10 strength training exercises.
 
Blood sugar test
12 practical tips.
Tom Hanks
Stars living with type 1 or type 2.
 
kenneth fujioka, md
Video
Can Vinegar Treat Diabetes
Article
 
Middle aged person
Tool
jennie brand miller
Video
 

Prediabetes How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
Article
type 2 diabetes
Slideshow
 
food fitness planner
Tool
feet
Slideshow