Most of us don't check our kid's blood sugar. So, chances are you don't know if it's healthy. Still, there may be clues that your child's levels are out of whack, and you may want to give your pediatrician a call.
Signs of High Blood Sugar
If your youngster just had an ice cream sundae, you could probably guess that their blood sugar is high. You might be right. But if they're healthy, their levels will quickly get back to normal. So that kind of spike isn't really a problem.
If their blood sugar levels stay up no matter what they have to eat, that's cause for concern. It could signal diabetes.
Tip-offs that your child's blood sugar level may be too high include:
Constant trips to the bathroom: If it seems like they have to pee all the time, it might be because their body is trying to flush out extra glucose.
Extreme thirst: If your youngster is peeing a lot, they're losing a lot of fluids. They may try to get them back by drinking more than usual.
Signs of Low Blood Sugar
You might assume that lower blood sugar is better than high. That's true, but only up to a certain point: If blood sugar goes too low, it means your child won't have enough fuel. If it gets really low (your doctor may call it hypoglycemia), your child could have a seizure or even develop brain damage.
A child who doesn't have diabetes might have an episode of hypoglycemia because they skipped lunch before soccer practice. It's also possible that a medicine your child takes raises their chances of having low blood sugar. They also could have been born with a condition that affects their metabolism. In any case, unless the cause is clear-cut (like not eating before being active), you should have your child's pediatrician investigate.
If your child has low blood sugar, you may notice:
- Pale or gray skin
Your child might tell you that they:
- Feels shaky or dizzy
- Gets headaches
- Struggles to see clearly
- Sweats even when they're not active
- Is hungry a lot
Severe hypoglycemia can make your child pass out. If that, or a seizure, happens, call for medical help right away.