Diabetes symptoms: The sudden mood change that could be a warning sign of hypoglycaemia

Diabetes type 2: Dr Zoe Williams discusses high blood sugar risks

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Diabetes symptoms can vary depending on your blood sugar levels. However, when blood sugar levels drop too low, usually below 3.5mmol/L, this is known as hypoglycaemia.

Hypoglycaemic episodes are more common in people who have type one diabetes. However, those with type two diabetes can see blood sugar levels drop as a result of too much insulin or lower blood sugar levels.

There are a number of symptoms of low blood sugar, such as excessive sweating or feeling tired.

However, hypoglycaemic episodes can also suddenly impact your mood.

Medical News Today states mood changes can come on “rapidly”.

According to the NHS, mood changes include “becoming easily irritated, tearful, anxious or moody”.

People may also begin to find it difficult to concentrate on a task or what is going on around them.

How is hypoglycaemia caused?

Hypoglycaemia can occur for a number of reasons which can contribute to a drop in blood glucose levels.

According to the NHS, this can happen when a person:

  • Delays meals
  • Have not had enough carbohydrates
  • Does lots of exercise without having the right amount of carbohydrate or has reduced their insulin dose

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  • Has taken too much insulin
  • Drink alcohol on an empty stomach

Hypoglycaemia episodes can come on fast and so it is important people with diabetes are aware of some of the signs and symptoms.
This will help treat it quickly and correctly.

What are some of the main signs and symptoms of hypoglycaemia?

Along with mood changes, hypoglycaemic episodes can also present a number of physical symptoms.

These include:

  • Sweating
  • Feeling hungry
  • Blurred vision
  • Trembling or feeling shaky

How can I treat a hypoglycaemic episode?

The best way to treat hypoglycaemia is by recognising the signs quickly.

Before symptoms worsen, it is recommended people eat or drink something sugary.

The NHS advises eating between three and six dextrose or glucose sweets.

Alternatively, approximately five jelly sweets, such as Jelly Babies, one glass of a non-diet sugary drink, or a glass of fruit juice.

However, it is important not to eat too much sugar or consume too much food which may then result in a blood glucose spike.

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