What to Do if Someone Goes into Diabetic Shock

Extreme hypoglycemia, with sugar levels under 70 mg/dl, is referred to as diabetic shock. It is a medical emergency. Persons with diabetes should be aware of the symptoms and should educate those around them on what to do in the event they are unable to act on their own behalf.

How Does It Happen?

Hypoglycemia is defined as having too little glucose in the blood. Glucose is critical to the functioning of our cells, supplying energy for their processes. Hypoglycemia is the result of an imbalance between insulin levels (insulin facilitates the entry of glucose into the cells) and glucose levels. Whether as the result of medication, diet, exercise, stress or illness, the body is not reacting as expected.

Too little glucose can cause symptoms ranging from sweating, dizziness, shakiness, rapid heartbeat and hunger in mild cases to aggression, mental confusion, unconsciousness, seizures and coma in extreme cases.

What to Do

When early symptoms of hypoglycemia appear, it is wise for the diabetic to take a blood sugar reading. Prompt attention to this can prevent an emergency situation. Remedies could include consuming glucose tablets or glucose gel, which are over-the-counter products available in drug stores. Other options include an 8-ounce glass of milk, 4 ounces of fruit juice or non-diet soda, a handful of raisins, or a tablespoon of sugar or honey.

After ingesting the remedy, wait 15 minutes and check sugar levels again. If still low, repeat the treatment.

In the event that mental confusion, seizure or unconsciousness has occurred, those around the diabetic will need to act. The patient should receive immediate medical attention. Revival of those suffering from hypoglycemic shock can be complex and requires the direction of experienced medical professionals to avoid complications.

While awaiting an ambulance, attempts to revive the patient should be limited to applying a small amount of honey or sugar to the gums or introducing some glucagon gel to the inside of the cheek. If the patient is semi-conscious or unconscious, do not attempt to have the patient ingest solid foods or liquids in order to avoid the risk of choking. Injections of glucagon, available in emergency kits, should only be attempted by those who have been trained in their use.

While awaiting emergency personnel, remain with the patient to make sure he or she is safe and comfortable. Be prepared to tell the emergency staff what steps were taken to revive the patient and when they were taken.

Prior planning, making sure those who are in daily contact with the person with diabetes are trained in what to do in the event of an emergency, and attention to changes in glucose levels can keep the diabetic safe.

Sources: National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse, Mayo Clinic
Photo: Pexels

Get Free Diabetic Supplies

For a limited time only, you can reduce diabetic supplies costs by more than 90%. Enrolling just take a few minutes.
1) Fill out the form
2) Speak to a representative
3) Get diabetic supplies delivered to your door at little or no cost.

Also, you will get a free Diabetes Meal Plan from a Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator.

Enter your information below to see if you qualify.

By clicking Submit, you agree to send your info to BattleDiabetes.com and we agree to use it according to our privacy policy.

More Articles

More Articles

Potassium is a vital part of our everyday diet. Foods high in potassium include bananas, avocados, yogurt, beans, and fish. Like all nutrients,...

Insulin resistance occurs when insulin is produced by the body but not used effectively by the cells....

Metabolic alkalosis is caused by too much bicarbonate in the body's fluids, causing them to become alkaline. It can occur as the result of kidney...

The so-called "diabetic diet" is not a diet at all. In fact, there are several methods that can be used to create healthful meals that meet the...

People with diabetes have a greater chance of developing non-alcoholic fatty liver disease than non-diabetics. The liver is a normal part of the...

The Mayo Clinic Diabetic Diet consists of ...

Diabetics should avoid white bread and anything else made with white flour because it can raise their...

Two kinds of edema are associated with diabetes: peripheral edema and diabetic macular edema. Peripheral edema is swelling in your lower legs,...

Eating a balanced diet can have a significant impact on individuals who have type 2 diabetes. In fact,...

It is important for people with type 2 diabetes to follow a carefully recommended diet plan. The U.S....

According to the Mayo Clinic, excessive alcohol consumption can increase a person's risk of developing type 2...

Many cultures use rice as a staple in their diet, and it is almost always white rice. If you order a burrito in a restaurant, you will probably...

It is common knowledge that people with (or without) diabetes should exercise regularly. But why is exercise so important if diet appears to be...

Diabetes can be deadly if left undiagnosed, so it is very important to pay attention to your body if you are displaying any of the symptoms. Early...

One of the most important habits for diabetics to develop is a healthy exercise routine. If you’re...