Staying Safe IQ Quiz

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1 Staying Safe IQ Quiz Blood sugar levels that are too low or too high can abruptly turn into an emergency without fast and correct treatment. Knowing the facts like the difference between low and high blood sugar episodes, what safe blood sugar levels are, and when it's time to adjust your medication can help to keep you safe and manage your diabetes better. Do you think you know how to play it safe? Take our Staying Safe quiz to see how you rate, and increase your diabetes- IQ. A low blood sugar episode is also called: A) Hyperglycemia B) Sugar shock C) Hypoglycemia D) Pancreatitis The answer is C, hypoglycemia. The medical name for low blood sugar is hypoglycemia, which literally means low sugar. Generally speaking, blood sugar levels of 70 mg/dl or less are considered low. Symptoms of hypoglycemia include dizziness, sweating, confusion, erratic heartbeat, unexplained fatigue, hunger, shakiness, and potential loss of consciousness. A low should be treated immediately with a fast- acting carbohydrate such as orange juice or glucose tablets. Which of the following can trigger a low blood sugar? A) Aerobic exercise B) Too much insulin C) Medications D) All the above The answer is d, all the above. Aerobic exercise, too much insulin, and medications can all trigger a low blood sugar. Low blood sugars can be misleading because symptoms can be as severe as making you appear drunk or high (or both) and as subtle as sweating. Now that you know what can prompt a low blood sugar, you can be more aware and safer. An insulin reaction is a low blood sugar caused by: A) Too much food 1

2 B) Too much insulin C) Too much sleep D) Too much coffee The answer is b, too much insulin. Hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, is sometimes called "an insulin reaction." It's caused by taking too much insulin for your body's current needs. It can also be caused by certain oral diabetes medications that increase insulin production in the body. The name for blood sugars that are too high is: A) Hyperglycemia B) Bad sugars C) Hypoglycemia D) Insulin reaction The answer is a, hyperglycemia In extreme cases, hyperglycemia, or above normal blood sugar levels, can lead to diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) and hyperglycemic hyperosmolar nonketotic syndrome (HHNS). These syndromes can occur in people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes; however, DKA is more common in people with type 1 and HHNS is more common in people with type 2. Over time, hyperglycemia can cause damage to the blood vessels that supply blood to very important organs, increasing the risk of heart disease and stroke, kidney disease, nerve problems, and vision problems. A fasting (before meal) blood sugar of 210 mg/dl is too high. True or False? A) True B) False The answer is true. American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) suggests fasting and before meal blood sugar targets be below <110 mg/dl (6.1 mmol/l). The American Diabetes Association (ADA) suggests slightly different targets of mg/dl ( mmol/l). Remember that normal results may vary by age, other illnesses, and by medications. 2

3 Monitoring your blood sugar levels and keeping them as close to normal as you can is crucial in maintaining good diabetes control and reducing your risk of diabetes complications. Which of the following can raise my blood sugar too high?: A) Stress B) Excess carbohydrates C) Illness D) Medications E) All the above The answer is e, all the above. Stress, excess carbohydrates, illness, and certain medications can all raise blood sugar too high. Testing your blood sugar is the single best way to tell how daily activities impact your diabetes. Blood sugar that remains high for long periods of time can cause serious health problems if left untreated, so make sure you test often to stay safe. Although everyone is different, the general safe range for a fasting (or before a meal) blood sugar is: A) 110mg/dl or higher. B) Less than 110mg/dl C) Between 70 and 130 mg/dl D) All of the above The answer is d, all the above. The guidelines from the two major diabetes organizations are slightly different. The American Diabetes Association says blood sugar before a meal should be between 70 and 130 mg/dl, while the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists says it should be less than 110 mg/dl. Talk to your doctor about what's right for you. Two hours after the start of a meal, your blood sugar should be: A) Less than 180mg/dl B) Between 50 and 75 mg/dl C) Around 210mg/dl D) None of the above. The answer is a, less than 180mg/dl The American Diabetes Association says blood sugar levels after the start of a meal should be less than 180 mg/dl, while the American Association of Clinical 3

4 Endocrinologists says it should be less than 140 mg/dl. Talk to your doctor about what's right for you. Postprandial testing, or after meal testing, helps you achieve the best control of your blood sugar levels and makes sure that your mealtime insulin is meeting your needs for the carbohydrates you consumed. After a meal, blood sugars change quickly, so testing is important. Which of the following are signs that you may need an adjustment in medication?: A) Blood sugar levels that are often too high. B) Severe side effects that don t seem to lessen over time. C) Frequent low blood sugar episodes. D) All of the above. The answer is d, all of the above. The goal of diabetes medications are to keep your blood sugars within a normal range most, if not all, of the time. Side effects are common with some medications, but adjustments in dose usually help reduce discomfort and they generally lessen over time. If you are experiencing persistent highs and/or lows, or if you have been on a medication for a month or longer and are still having side effects that impact your daily activity, you should talk to your doctor as soon as possible about adjusting or changing your medication. If I exercise regularly, my need for diabetes medication may: A) Increase B) Decrease C) Stay the same D) Both B & C The answer is both b & C, decrease or stay the same. Long term, regular exercise has the potential to decrease your medication needs. Losing weight through exercise can decrease your amount of insulin resistance and therefore lower your medication needs. And regular resistance training has the potential to increase your insulin sensitivity, which can have the same effect. However, not everyone will require a decrease in dosage, particularly if you didn't need to lose weight before your exercise program began. 4

5 Always monitor your blood sugars regularly when you start an exercise plan, and use an exercise and blood sugar diary to see what your workouts are doing to your levels over time. And if you think your medication or insulin dose needs adjusting, call your doctor before making any changes. 5

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