Hypoglycemia Awareness

Just wondering, at what blood sugar levels do you start to feel the symptoms? I start to feel uneasy, nervous, and weak at about 60 mg/dl, but there are several times I don’t even recognize until I feel hungry or lightheaded. I usually check my blood sugars 8-10 times a day and eat every 3 hrs (small meals). Any advice would be appreciated!

I too suffer from hypo unawareness… i feel fine until about 50

Anything below 70. If I’m around 70-120 all day, maybe 60. So… 65 on the average?

But I must say, I have more difficulty to estimate my bg since I switched to Levemir. It’s kind of strange. Fortunately, it did not affect my hypo awareness too much, so I still notice when I’m too low… usually.

I don’t really have an advice, I guess I’m just lucky that I don’t have an unawareness. I’ve never thought about how I’m actually doing it, I just notice (with a hand full of exceptions, depending on the circumstances).

I usually notice when I am around 60, which is fine, because I don’t treat anything over 60. My awareness varies though. Occasionally I don’t notice till I’m lower - low 50s or even 40s and then it’s WHAM. Often I notice the cognitive/emotional things first, but also can count on my tingling tongue and visual problems. I notice quicker when I’m out and about than I do when I’m at home kicking back; when I’m walking somewhere sometimes I’m in the 60s and just feel like walking is too much trouble. Unfortunately I rarely wake up for lows during the night and have woken up in the 40s with no sense anything is wrong until I test. (I’m normally somewhat dazed in the morning and have the luxury of waking up slowly with no need to become alert and get going).

I usually notice a little bit above 60 and 65 if I am lucky. There are times that it sneaks up on me, usually during intense exercise or concentration or when BG is changing very rapidly. Sometimes (like Zoe said) hypos sneak up and slap you in the face. When I am less aware I may not catch a hypo until the mid to low 40s.

I’m about the same as you, Ninya. I feel it starting at about 65 very mildly, and my legs start to feel wea and shaky at around 60. After I get lower than that (45-60) my heart starts pounding and I get very shaky and start to feel lightheaded. I’ve only been VERY low once (meter just read “LO”) and that was long ago (within 2 weeks of diagnosis) at night… woke up in a cold sweat and stumbled my way to the fridge, and proceded to down 2 glasses of juice. My endo disallowed me from checking my sugars more than 3-4 times per day because I was overcompensating and it helped keep them more stable, oddly enough. Best of luck, and let me know how the small meals thing works, I’m curious.

Usually around 70 mg/dl but it depends on the sink rate. The steeper the earlier I will be aware that something is not right. The biggest problem are sliding lows at night. I start with 100 mg/dl and then it gradually sinks and sinks with a very small rate. Very likely I will not wake up from it and in the morning I will have something like 60 mg/dl. Maybe I would have woken up at 50 mg/dl. Usually I feel very tired then so I assume that the lower BG is disturbing the sleeping pattern. Back to the sink rate: I want to point out that getting used to swings will reduce your awareness for lows => try to reduce the number and height of swings in blood glucose per day (mathematically minimize standard deviation).

I would also say that a low within the last 4 hours makes you less alert for the next low. So if the rate of lows is too high this will automatically reduce your awareness - independent of your general awareness for lows => try to reduce the rate of lows per day.

It all depends on how recently I’ve had a lower sugar, sometimes when my control has been steady, I will feel it around 70, other times when I wake up around 70 I can hit 50 before I notice. The worst I’ve ever had it was I was at 42 when I first felt it and tested. It varies a lot on how tight I’m trying to keep my control for the given period before the drop.

Same here… usually when I test and get a # in the 40’s it’s a surprise, because I honestly don’t feel low, and I’m not impaired… I’ve jokingly referred to it as “high-functioning hypoglycemia”. Usually by the time I “feel” low I am in the 30’s.

If I wake up at night with a low the most telling sign is that I am drenched in sweat… generally I still feel perfectly fine and I have always been able to take care of myself.

I’ve been this way from the very beginning - nothing I’ve ever attempted to do to “regain” my ability to feel lows has worked.

This can vary a bit for me too. If I were to generalise it I’d say that I start to feel symptoms at around the 55mark.

Sarah - “high-functioning hypoglycemia” hahaha good call. I too function (walking around, coherently answering questions etc) right up to the 20-25mark. That being said I wouldn’t call it hypo unawareness because I am VERY aware that I am not right.

barb - what you say about bring back some of the signs by keeping your BS higher is partially correct by my understanding, although it is not something you want to do. The human body becomes ‘used’ to your average BS levels and responds accordingly - ie if you have a higher a1C you tend to feel a hypo earlier on.