High blood sugar in
diabetes occurs when the sugar (glucose) level in the
blood rises above normal. It is also called hyperglycemia. When you have diabetes, high blood sugar may
be caused by not getting enough insulin or missing your diabetes medicine. It may also be caused by eating too much food, skipping exercise, or being ill or
Unlike low blood sugar, high blood sugar usually happens
slowly over hours or days. Blood sugar levels above your target range may
make you feel tired and thirsty. If your blood sugar keeps rising, your kidneys will make more urine and you can get
dehydrated. Signs of dehydration include being thirstier than usual and having darker urine than usual. Without treatment, severe dehydration can be life-threatening. Over time, high blood sugar can damage the eyes,
heart, kidneys, blood vessels, and nerves.
Watch for symptoms of high blood sugar. Symptoms include feeling very tired or thirsty and urinating more often than usual. As long as you
notice the symptoms, you will probably have time to treat high blood sugar so that
you can prevent an emergency. Three things can help you prevent high blood
- Test your blood sugar often, especially if you
are sick or not following your normal routine. Testing lets you see when your blood
sugar is above your target range, even if you don't have symptoms. Then you can treat
- Call your doctor if you often have high blood sugar or
your blood sugar is often above your target range. Your medicine may
need to be adjusted or changed.
- Drink extra water or drinks that don't have caffeine or sugar to prevent dehydration.
How do you prevent high blood sugar emergencies?