When we think about blood sugar, the first thing that usually comes to mind is diabetes. While that is one of the most common reasons for changes in blood sugar levels, anyone can experience a drop or increase for a variety of reasons, including other illnesses or side effects from certain medications. Your local pharmacy can discuss these types of side effects with you if you have concerns.
Meanwhile, let’s take a look at some of the ways high or low blood sugar can affect your body.
Symptoms of High Blood Sugar
When your blood sugars are elevated, it can cause a variety of different symptoms. If you find yourself experiencing any of these, you can talk to your local pharmacy for advice before booking an appointment with your doctor.
- More Frequent Urination – If you find yourself needing to go to the bathroom much more often than usual, it could be a sign that your blood sugar is too high. When you have extra sugar in the blood, your kidneys cannot process it fast enough, so your body gets rid of it for you. However, that also means you are losing fluids that your body needs and could become dehydrated. Frequent urination can also be a sign of infection, so it could be a good idea to pick up a UTI testing kit at your local pharmacy.
- Feeling Thirsty – When your body is trying to get rid of extra sugar in your blood, it will draw water from whichever tissues it can. However, because you need that fluid for a variety of processes in the body, including transferring nutrients, your brain flips the thirsty switch prompting you to drink more than usual.
- Skin Complaints – By now, it is likely becoming clear that many of the issues caused by high blood sugar are water-related! Again, when the body starts taking water from the skin to flush out the extra sugar, the result can be dry, itchy, and cracked. This can develop into a more serious condition called diabetic neuropathy, which affects how you feel cuts and other wounds or infections on the skin.
Signs of Low Blood Sugar
Having low blood sugar can make you feel just as unwell as high blood sugar, but the symptoms are a little different. Some of them can be treated with advice from your local pharmacy, but others may need further treatment.
- Fatigue – If you have diabetes, you may rely on insulin to bring down your blood sugar levels when they are elevated. However, if the dose is incorrect, it could bring it down too quickly, leaving your body unable to replace it fast enough. This can result in a lack of energy and feelings of fatigue. Insulin treatment is not the only cause of a drop in blood sugar, and other factors can have the same effect.
- Irregular Heartbeat – Sometimes, if your blood sugar is too low, there are hormones in the body that will help to raise it back to normal levels. However, these can also cause weird spikes in your heartbeat, making it feel like you are skipping a beat now and then. This is called arrhythmia and can be a side effect of some medications used to treat diabetes. You can purchase an at-home heart rate monitor from your local pharmacy.
- Intense Hunger – Sometimes, illness or certain medications can cause the body not to convert food into blood sugar appropriately. When that happens, you may feel sudden, intense hunger even shortly after eating a meal. This is because the blood sugar levels in your body are low, tricking your brain into thinking you need to eat something to rebalance them. Usually, adjusting your medication will rectify this problem.
Your Hometown Pharmacy Since 1966
Vaughn Pharmacy is a local, family-owned pharmacy serving the community in Powell, TN. Specializing in providing personalized and attentive prescription programs to our patients, we believe you are more than just a number – you’re part of our family!