Signs and Symptoms of Hypoglycemia


Signs and symptoms of hypoglycemia include the following:

Confusion (e.g., inability to read the time or to find things)


Hand tremors

Tingling sensation in fingers or tongue

Buzzing in ears

Elevated pulse rate

Great hunger

Tight feeling in throat or near rear of tongue


Impaired ability to detect sweet tastes


Inappropriate laughter or joking



Anxiety or panic

Pounding hands on tables and walls or kicking the floor or other objects

Miscellaneous visual impairments, such as blurred or double vision, seeing spots, visual hallucinations (e.g., letters or numbers seem to be printed in Chinese)

Uncontrolled extension, stretching, or movement of the arms or legs

Poor physical coordination (e.g., bumping into walls and dropping things)




Sudden awakening from sleep

Shouting while asleep (or awake)

Rapid shallow breathing




Hot feeling

Cold or clammy skin, especially on the neck




Pale complexion


Slurred speech

Nystagmus  (This symptom may be demonstrated by slowly moving your eyes from side to side while keeping your head immobile.  If another person is asked to watch your eyes, she will notice-when your blood sugar is low-that they may jerk briefly in the reverse direction, or “ratchet,” instead of moving smoothly.  You can observe the effect of this by looking at the sweep second hand of your watch.  If it seems occasionally to jump ahead, your are experiencing nystagmus (actually, as your eyes jumped to the side for brief instants, you missed seeing bits of motion of the the second hand).

Several of these symptoms may occur at the same time.  One symptom alone may be the only indicator.  In some cases, there may be no clearly apparent early signs or symptoms at all.

Information compiled from “Diabetes Solution” by Dr. Richard Bernstein


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  1. Trackback: Emergency Plan for the Diabetic | Diabetic Treatment Alternatives

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