What's considered hypo unawareness? and is Hyper unawareness possible?

Reason i ask is because i can wake up at 42 (and have, several times) and the only clue i have that my BG is low is that my heart is beating hard. Nothing else.

Other times, my BG can be 2 or 3 hundred and i feel fine. I remember one time i went out to eat, completely forgot to bolus, and my bg was over 500!! I felt fine! Is that normal?

Hypo unawareness is no symptoms while being low I have it I don’t show any signs of hypo till my BG is around 20 or so. it is because we have been low so many times our body is used to it. mine is due to my tight control overly tight some might say so I had to loosen up a bit to get that awareness back. hyper unawareness same thing just high instead of low I am sure if you kept sugars under control more often you will get the symptoms back. we need these symptoms as much as we hate them it is our body telling us there is a problem

Hmm… I do know when I am going too low --I get the shaking and sweating feeling… but when Im high… I can’t really tell the difference and I feel “normal” — this isn’t a good thing and have been working to get it into the range my endo wants it (90 and 120)… keeping a tight control has been a bit difficult for me… eep!!

I feel high when I hit 130. I feel like I’m going to die at 200. That’s because I almost never go high, and I spend a lot of my time low. You’d think I’d be hypo-unaware, but I’m not. I’m almost always aware of when I go low. Maybe it just depends on the person.

But I agree with everyone else - the reason you don’t notice it at 300 is because you’re used to being 300. The reason I want to die at 200 is because I’m not used to it.

I’ve been 28 and argued with my husband that I was fine. Other times I can tell when about 40 or 50 but it’s ever so slight and has changed over the years. Just when I think I’ve figured out the sign, it changes again, very aggravating! It’s definitely related to how often you’re low, you do get acclimated. You can also reverse it just by keeping BG levels in a normal range for a while. I feel fine when it goes high but I never let it stay high for very long.

Usually if i’m below 80 or so i feel kinda off, and if i’m over 150 or so i feel high, but then i have times when i can be 500 and feel fine, and 40 and feel fine… not all the time, but it does happen.

Usually when i first wake up, i go through a kinda check list. I know all the signs to look out for, and i’m so used to waking up on the lowish side, that i go down a list to see if i’m low. If i think i am, i roll over, and get my meter and strips and check my BG (i have them both on the headboard of my bed). If i am low (i ALWAYS wake up when i hit the 40’s) i take some glucose tabs and sit there for a minute, then wake up and make a breakfast, and i’m fine for the rest of the day.

I’ve just noticed lately that i can be low while i’m awake, and have no clue about it. I’ll also wake up, and have no sign of being low other than my heart is just beating kinda hard. not really pounding, and not racing. just beating hard.

I’ve mad it a habit to check my bg the second i wake up. Especially if it’s at odd times, as it’s usually due to my bg being out of range… i got my A1C today, and it was 6.2, down from 7.9, so that change might be throwing my senses off a bit?

Stephen, I actually react more like you than any of these other postings, in that I have excellent glucose control (last AiC of 5.8), but some days I would not have a CLUE that I was over 300 mg/dl! I actually used to think that it was due to being high often and your body is “used to it”, but research has shown and my Endo agrees that these symptoms can be a function of stress, age, fitness, other metabolic states, and related factors.

Bottom line: you might have pretty great control most of the time and still have hypo- and hyper-unawareness. Nothing to panic about, but I know it can feel unnerving. Good luck with it.

Thanks :slight_smile:
It hasn’t happened again since i posted this, but i still don’t understand exactly why that happens… if i haven’t been over 200 in a week, you’d think i’d notice shooting all the way up to 500 (Went to Wards with my brother… their burgers are like a heart attack on a bun) :confused: Guess it just happens. I usually catch it because i know what my sugar should do, but you’re right, it is unnerving.

Hypo unawareness usually from either too many lows or good tight control at a relative low range. If you want to restoer hypo awareness - run sugers higher for 2 weeks (7-8) and then you will get shakes etc… or whatever your sign is or was. If happy with unawareness - keep checkign and checking and checking especially before driving, swimming etc…

Stephen, I had the same prob you are talking about - had to be at 50 or below to feel hypo… I have started using the Dexcom SevenPlus CGM and have my low alarm set to 80, which has proved to be very beneficial… I have mine set both to vibrate and alarm, and it wakes me up at night when I start going low like that. I always test to make sure that the alarm is accurate, then I delay insulin delivery for 30 minutes or so and eat about 4 - 6 glucose tabs. This seems to help…

Im hypo unaware and I dont feel bg highs either…

Hypounawareness is not feeling any symptoms below 70. Rapid heartbeat is a symptom.
HYPER-unawareness is definately possible, but not normal. If you cannot tell if you are high at 300 then you are reaching that number too often.
Hypo and hyper unawareness reverses/improves with better, tighter control. Be sure that you are checking your bgs closely. I know it’s hard to get the hang of and seems pointless at times ( I used to absolutely hate checking my bgs!), but it really is necessary. Going too long with low glucose damages brain cells. High glucose levels damage the walls of your blood vessels which leads to heartattacks and strokes. You’re young. Start taking a higher interest in your health so you can live longer and healthier.

Hypo unawareness is when you cannot recognize lows… It often happens when you keep very tight control of your sugars, bodering between very tight control, and low control. The result of this happening is your body’s nervous system then does not send off the signals that you might normally get from a low sugar. Like sweating, or confusion, you know typical symptoms. i have dealt with that in the past, and turns out the Ace Inhibitor that the doc put me on to help protect the kidney’s and eyes was keeping my pressure so even that I was not able to pick up on the lows, so those are the two most common ways that I have ran across that issues. If it is a matter of your control being too tight, then let your sugars run a bit higher consistently for like 7-10 days, so that the body gets back to normal, and gradually bring your sugar back down to normal range…

Good Luck to you, any questions feel free to ask-- oh by the way the med they had me on that caused the trouble was Lisonapril

Yes very normal. Readings very high/low have even more ERROR percentage wise to them, than normal.
If you dont trust a test number, take it a couple more times. You certainly could have been 500, but you also could have had something on your finger too.

Retest a couple times if the number seems odd

The normal reason people don’t FEEL something when high or low is two fold.
a) their normal average readings is at that particular level so that whatever the number it feels normal for them
b) the feelings are not like we are flapping our arms, or singing a broadway tune… if these feelings were that melodramatic we’d all know it instantly. They are not.

Feeling are very subjective. Yeah maybe I should be tired, its been a HARD day… ennnngh, maybe Im low… hummmmngh which one. Btw, waking up because we are low is a particular phenomina nobody knows why, but we do…


According to a recent study by Bayer diabetes care up to 75% of diabetics believe they can tell their bg numbers without testing, Crazy, I know but if these numbers are anywhere near true then this should be less than a complicated guess work of events....check out the crazy findings from the study and some other interesting findings here....http://t.co/Iat9m9r

You wouldn't be in danger of ketones if you were 500 from missing a bolus, though. There would be no interruption of basal insulin so your body's cells would be getting the baseline insulin they need just fine. If you were 500 from your infusion set being kinked or from being sick and needing more insulin then that's a different story completely in regards to ketones.

For some reason I find that if I'm extremely high I often don't feel it as well as when I'm only moderately high. I don't feel high at all until I'm 14+ (250+) for a few hours, then I start feeling a bit dehydrated and get blurry vision.

I find I get hypoglycemia unawareness if I go low more than a few times a week, and also when my A1c gets below about 6.8%. It's frustrating because it limits me in how low I'm able to get my A1c safely. I used to have real hypoglycemia unawareness and would get so low that I needed help from other people to treat it without feeling a thing. I could have readings like 1.9 mmol/L and feel perfectly fine. Thankfully, that's gone away with adulthood, probably because I'm more aware of my body and how it feels.

Interestingly enough I found out the hard way that ACE inhibitors and ARB's (another similar class like ACE's) can also increase your sensitivity to insulin. My doc switched me from one to the other and back to the first and each time I had about a 2 week period where I was extremly sensitive to insulin. Low after Low..........HURRY UP TAKE MY A1c :-). The theory is that these meds can increase peripheral sensitivity. Good thing I read the medications guides they give you at the pharmacy (who ever reads those I know....).

This is not true. I am rarely at 300...almost never in fact, but recently I switched by insulin regime and went over 300 twice. I did not feel it either time. If people felt really bad from one spike to 300 diabetes would be much easier to diagnoses. It is the prolonged high which makes people feel bad. Unlike hyop unawareness, unawareness of hypergylcemia is not from staying too high.

I feel hypos BETTER when I'm resting or inactive (like on the computer!) If I'm busy and active, I tend not to feel them until the activity is over, and then I confuse the feeling with tiredness.

For highs, if you don't usually have them, you are more likely to feel them. Your body gets used to wherever your BGs are.

I'm an advocate of consistent BGs (hard to do, I know). If you can ride plus or minus 40 mg/dl around 120, you're doing excellently, in my book! For me, low-carbing has helped TONS, but it's an individual matter. Plus it depends on your activity level -- people engaging in strenuous athletics need more carbs than less active individuals, diabetic or not.

Keep on trying Stephen, you have a long, and I hope healthy, life ahead of you! :-)

I have had hypoglycemia unawareness almost 3 years now and have tried everything even running the blood sugars up. Some times you do get back some symptoms in my case i did not. I don’t get any symptoms from lows but i do if my blood sugar starts to go high which is helpful.