Too much glucose (sugar) in your blood is called hyperglycemia or high blood sugar. High blood sugar can lead to a dangerous condition called ketoacidosis. In severe cases, it can lead to coma.
Possible Causes of Hyperglycemia
Eating too much food, especially carbohydrates
Being less active than usual
Not taking enough medication
Being under stress
Symptoms of Hyperglycemia
Hyperglycemia may not cause symptoms. If you do have symptoms, they may include:
Frequent need to urinate
Itchy, dry skin
Wounds or skin infections that don’t heal
What You Should Do
Check your blood sugar.
Drink sugar-free, caffeine-free liquids such as water or diet soda. Don’t drink fruit juice.
Check your blood sugar again every 4 hours. If you take insulin or diabetes medications, follow your sick-day plan for taking medication. Call your health care provider if you are not able to eat.
Check your blood or urine for ketones as directed.
Call your health care provider if your blood sugar and ketones do not return to your target range.
Preventing High Blood Sugar
To help keep your blood sugar from getting too high:
Follow your meal plan. Eat only the amount of food on your meal plan.
Follow your exercise plan.
Take your insulin or diabetes medications as directed by you health care team. Also test your blood sugar as directed.
When you’re ill, follow your sick-day plan.
Other Things to Do
Carry a medical ID card or wear a medical alert bracelet. It should say that you have diabetes. It should also say what to do in case you pass out or go into a coma.
Make sure family, friends, and coworkers know the signs of high blood sugar. Tell them what to do if your blood sugar gets very high and you can’t help yourself.
Talk to your health care team about other things you can do to prevent high blood sugar.
Special note: Drink plenty of sugar-free and caffeine-free liquids when you feel symptoms of hyperglycemia. Call your doctor if you keep having episodes of hyperglycemia.