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How to know if high or low without a monitor

Discussion in 'Blood Glucose Monitoring' started by jimmyr, Feb 7, 2016.

  1. jimmyr

    jimmyr Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Guys and Girls, i am wondering if anyone here can tell me this, Is there a difference in the way you feel when your levels are low or high, can you tell whether you are low or high without testing. I ask because i have been out sometimes without my meter and fealy horrible all of a sudden, sweaty, nauseus, dizzy, but not knowing whether high or low i have been to frightened to take glucose gel, or Lucozade in case i was already high, i have had to sit quietly in the hope that the horrible experience would fade and luckily it has.
    Thanks
     
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  2. Lamont D

    Lamont D Reactive hypoglycemia · Master

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    Unfortunately, no one is the same in their symptoms, but if I had to guess, it seems as though you are describing a drop in blood glucose levels.
    This in itself is not harmful or really bad in the scheme of things but just makes you feel that way.
    You will have to get a meter to find out what is going on.
    The other alternative if you know your hba1c or last test numbers is to pop along to a chemist that does glucose monitor tests for you. I would do a fasting one.

    if you feel really bad, then take some glucose to make you feel better.

    This is the part that is important to a diabetic.
    How do you know which foods affect your blood glucose levels?
    How can you plan your next few months without knowing if your blood glucose levels are going up or down?

    You need a meter to monitor and test to find this out, keep a food diary, show your GP, and he might put them on prescription for you. If you are serious about being in control, then as I say he should help you.

    Sorry that you are looking for a definitive answer, I can only guess!

    Edited by a mod to remove incorrect hypo advice for diabetes
     
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    #2 Lamont D, Feb 7, 2016 at 4:42 PM
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 7, 2016
  3. Liam1955

    Liam1955 Type 2 · Master

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    Hi. Interesting question! But, the symptoms you describe in your thread are all what I experience when I start to have a hypo, and then check my blood sugar to confirm - it's an hypo. William.
     
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  4. Snapsy

    Snapsy Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Often I can tell if I'm high or low purely by considering how I'm feeling at the time, although often I can't. And that's with three decades' experience! So I always test. I always always have my meter.

    I have a particular set of symptoms which I call the 'either 2 or 12'. I always test to check, and I'm right in my guess approximately half the time. The symptoms of my 2 and my 12 are far too similar to rely on that guesswork. Had I had glucose when already 12, that would be a problem. If I didn't, and it turned out I was 2, that would be a problem.

    If I'm not sure, I test. If I'm sure, I still test. I would find it too scary to get it wrong!
     
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  5. ally1

    ally1 Type 2 · Expert

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    I never know, fortunately l have never experienced lows so would, t know what to expect
     
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  6. anna29

    anna29 Type 2 · Well-Known Member
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    Too risky to self rely on any guessing games with your own blood sugar readings .
    Diabetes is silent unseen and can be highly unpredictable .
    Changes and shifts its course sometimes without any rhyme or reason .
    A right pain in any guessing stakes too .

    Always use and refer to a meter to know accurately what your blood sugars
    sit at .
    Before eating and after eating , you can over time start to see a pattern emerge .
    Yet if ill or using antibiotics, flu vaccines, stress, dental treatments, etc
    Your blood sugars can spike upwards despite all your best efforts .

    Same with hypo's - they can leave you feeling quite rough afterwards .
    Until the blood sugars reach a much safer level .

    A guessing of the blood sugars via how you feel is both unreliable and
    unrealistic .
    You may feel great and find your levels are too high or too low .

    Its not worth the risk - always best to test .
    This way you have the knowledge and peace of mind of accurately
    knowing where your blood sugars sit at in that moment of time .
     
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  7. jimmyr

    jimmyr Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the replies, i had a bad experience a couple of weeks ago, all of a sudden i felt so so bad, with the symptoms i mentiond earlier but much more intence, i managed to get to my meter, but i could not even hold it, it felt like all sugar had drained, can it happen so quickly, i was just so weak.
    Nosher i do have a meter but sometimes like a plonker i forget to take it out with me, not good with the brain nowadays what with strokes, i am also on warfrin, diabeties meds and anticoagulation meds dont get on well in my life, its like they are always fighting against eachother, especially whhere foods are concerned.

    Jim
     
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  8. Lamont D

    Lamont D Reactive hypoglycemia · Master

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    I can appreciate what you are going through, so if you do have a meter, then I would see what is going on to monitor your bloods properly, not just when you feel ill.
    Do the testing around your meals and see if what you are eating are spiking you.
    As I said eating low carb and with your other ailments in mind, being in control of your bloods should help.
    Which diabetic meds are you on?
    It could be them that is giving you hypo like symptoms.
     
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  9. anna29

    anna29 Type 2 · Well-Known Member
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    Try having another meter in the car or coat pocket or bag ?
    Then if ever forgetful as you say you can be .

    Bingo - there will be another meter there for when you need one !

    It takes a bit of forward thinking to set this up in place :)
    Gets around the problem kind of thing @jimmyr
     
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  10. Snapsy

    Snapsy Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    @jimmyr we need sooooooo many accessories just to keep operational, don't we? - drives me crazy!!

    If I didn't have my meter to hand I'd be a nervous wreck I think. Hard to remember everything ALL the time, though!
     
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  11. jimmyr

    jimmyr Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I do have another meter its the one i was sent for free its called Onetouch Vario, will have to see if i can get the bits for it on prescription, it is quicker to setup than the one i am using which i am given test strips on prescription.
     
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  12. Osidge

    Osidge Type 2 · Well-Known Member
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    If you are going hypo, a low carb meal will be of no use to you at all. You need to get your blood sugars up by taking in glucose or another quickly converting sugar. Going hypo can actually be very bad for you, especially if you are doing something that could be dangerous, like driving. Above all, only take advice from someone who gives good advice. Your life could literally be in danger by listening to guessers.

    Regards

    Doug
     
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  13. julieemma

    julieemma Prediabetes · Well-Known Member

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    Any advice please been on meteor min for 3 months came off it made me ill went on sitaglaptin terrible headaches giddy and feeling sick phoned doc said leave it off but got to see diabetic nurse Tuesday for a different media to be honest I rather not be on meds my hb1ac is 57 any advice please
     
  14. Scimama

    Scimama Type 2 (in remission!) · Well-Known Member

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    Hi @jimmyr I don't think there is any way to tell if its a hypo or hyper without testing, from my own experience I have specific symptoms/feeling unwell, shaking, tired etc when I have a BG level below 4, but I have VERY similar symptoms when I am dehydrated and have "normal" BG levels. So I generally have a large drink of water and test if I can before eating anything.

    As a thought, you said about strokes and your other medication, my father (also a diabetic) had a few strokes last year and now does have symptoms of weakness, tiredness etc similar to what you have described, these are related to his strokes and medication rather than his diabetes. Maybe have a chat with your GP??
     
  15. Blackers183

    Blackers183 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Low - confused, sweaty, tingling lips, super hungry.
    High - just feel ****.
     
  16. anna29

    anna29 Type 2 · Well-Known Member
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    We do have a separate sub forum of Reactive Hyperglycemia for those who
    wish to look into this .
    Some Type2;s do use insulin therapy to treat their diabete's sugar levels with .

    I myself am a Type 2 using insulin .
    Those using insulin to treat their diabetes sugar levels with cant use low carb treatment
    to treat a hypo with .
    I certainly would not and cant do this approach .

    The best thing to do @jimmyr is to ask your own doctors advice .
    Best to be safe than sorry .
     
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  17. mrspuddleduck

    mrspuddleduck · Guest

    Please don't take offence @Osidge by I found your post rather alarming! You say " Above all, only take advice from someone who gives good advice. Your life could literally be in danger by listening to guessers." But you yourself appear to have presumed that the OPs problems are diabetic related and give him advice to treat a hypo! I have looked at the OPs profile which includes his medication and overall health profile and as a result of bothering not to make assumption would offer the following advice -
    @jimmyr the symptoms you describe could be a hypo (or possibly not)in relation to your diabetes - although there are generalised symptoms, everyone is different and what you experience would depend upon your hypo awareness, the level if your bs, how quickly your bloods may have dropped, what activity you were engaging in at the time - the list goes on and on. I have looked at your profile and in my opinion you are on a lot of medications that could be causing this problem. You also list additional health problems that could possibly be causing this too. Obviously I'm not a doctor so can't be more specific but judging you profile history I would strongly suggest you need to visit your GP - ( my informed amateur hunch is you need a review if your diabetes and the meds you take for it). In the meantime I would increase the frequency of your testing so you can see if there is a pattern to your blood sugars. That will also help your GP. And don't forget to take your meter and hypo remedy when you go out!!! Take care, x
     
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  18. Osidge

    Osidge Type 2 · Well-Known Member
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    I did not assume anything about his situation but gave him the proper reaction needed to a hypo rather than the wrong one indicated by the previous poster. I also told him that hypos are serious whereas the previous poster indicated that they were nothing too bad. If you had wished to add to that advice about hypos or about other issues then it was open to you to do so. Why would you want to criticise my advice about hypos and their seriousness. Was it not correct in relation to hypos? You have introduced unfair criticism rather than just move the thread on - of course under the cloak of "do not take offence" when you were about to offend. So sad.
     
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  19. Brunneria

    Brunneria Other · Guru
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    Hi @jimmyr

    Without a meter, i think the only thing you can do is go by guesstimating your bg allowing for what you have eaten, combined with stress, medication and activity levels. Not ideal!

    Multiple meters sounds like a very good suggestion, so there is always one to hand, plus maybe a few experiments to see how many g carb will raise you by a couple of mmol/l - just enough to raise you out of the hypo zone without shooting you silly high.

    In my case, that would be 1.5 milk choc digestives, or a packet Walkers crisps, a small swig orange juice, or similar.

    As a T2, no bg lowering meds, i am more wary of over treating a hypo, than the hypo itself - but not everyone feels the same.

    It does sound like a trip to the doc to talk about other possible causes of your symptoms, and maybe a review of meds, is an excellent idea.
     
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  20. jimmyr

    jimmyr Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    But i feel worse when low, a lot worse in fact. I have been as high as 30 and just seem to feel very spaced out (i know its not good) i have been under 4 just and felt like i was going to die tuly, as soon as i put a digestive biscuit in my mouth and take the first bite i can feel myself becoming steady and focused again.
     
    #20 jimmyr, Feb 7, 2016 at 10:52 PM
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 7, 2016
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