Diabetes and disorders

Treating diabetes is a difficult matter that requires a lot of accuracy and precision. Despite all kinds of precautions, it may happen that you are not optimally adjusted to insulin or medication and suffer from disruptions, such as a hypo or a hyper. It is very important to deal with this adequately, otherwise the condition can lead to dangerous situations such as ketoacidosis.

Diabetes and disorders

Despite all attempts to regulate the amount of glucose in the blood as best as possible, it can happen that the blood glucose level becomes disrupted. This can have unpleasant consequences. Fortunately, you can prevent and/or treat many disruptions properly.

Precautionary measures

  1. Always carry a diabetes kit with you, containing at least the supplies for self-monitoring, insulin or tablets and glucose tablets or drinks.
  2. Inform those around you what to do if you lose consciousness during a severe disturbance.
  3. Carry something with you, such as a necklace or card in your wallet, that tells you you have diabetes and how to help you in an emergency.


The hypo

With a hypo, complaints arise because the blood glucose is too low. Hypos are quite common and are easy to recognize. If you respond quickly and adequately, a hypo is easy to treat yourself.

How do you recognize a hypo?

  • Vibrate
  • To sweat
  • Palpitations
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Large pupils
  • Lots of yawning
  • Mood swings
  • Mild feelings of anxiety

If the blood glucose level is much too low, complaints such as confusion, unclear speech , loss of consciousness, convulsions, uncoordinated reactions and numb feelings in parts of the body can occur.

What to do with a hypo?

  • If you notice that you have a hypo, immediately stop all activities. This is especially important for activities where attention is crucial.
  • Then test your blood glucose so you know if you really have a hypo. If you do not have any testing equipment with you, err on the side of caution and take glucose.
  • When you have a hypo you need glucose. You should therefore take this. This can be in the form of dextrose (dextro energy tablets), lemonade syrup or pure sugar.
  • Then test your blood glucose again after about fifteen minutes.
  • If your blood glucose level is not normal, repeat the procedure.


The hyper

With a hyper, complaints arise because the blood glucose is too high. A hyper is also called hyperglycemia or hypoglycemia.

How do you recognize a hyper?

  • Having to pee a lot
  • Being very thirsty
  • Dehydration symptoms
  • Fatigue
  • Headache


What to do with a hyper?

  • Test the blood glucose and continue to repeat this regularly
  • Try to drink a lot, even if you feel nauseous
  • If you use insulin, continue to use it as usual
  • Test the blood glucose again after two hours to see if the situation has improved. If it has not really decreased, notify your doctor



If a hyper is not treated, it can progress into a so-called ketoacidosis or a non-ketotic coma. This situation arises when the muscle cells receive so little energy from glucose that they start to store fats to provide themselves with energy. When these fats are converted into energy, toxic acids are released called ketones (also known as keto acids).
Complaints you may experience include not feeling well, low blood pressure, increased dehydration, vomiting, stronger and heavier breathing, feeling drowsy and, in the worst case, even falling into a coma .

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