Hypoglycemia means low blood sugar.

Your body needs glucose for energy. After you eat, your blood absorbs glucose. If you eat more sugar than your body needs, your muscles and liver store the extra amount. When your blood sugar begins to fall, a hormone tells your liver to release glucose. In most people, this raises blood sugar. If it doesn’t, you have hypoglycemia. In some people, the blood sugar can be dangerously low and interfere with normal functioning.

Signs of hypoglycemia include:

  • Hunger
  • Shakiness
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Feeling anxious or weak

In people with diabetes, hypoglycemia can be a side effect to medications used to manage diabetes. If this is the case, eating or drinking carbohydrates can help balance blood sugar. If episodes of hypoglycemia happen often, contact your Ohio State healthcare provider as you may need a change to your treatment plan.

Some people have low blood sugar without having diabetes. This may be the result of medications, diseases, hormone or enzyme deficiencies, or even a tumor. Your Ohio State doctor can perform tests to determine why you are experiencing hypoglycemia and determine the proper course of treatment.

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