Drugs That Raise Your Blood Sugar
If you have been diagnosed with diabetes, you probably know about the different types of food and drink that can increase your blood sugar . But did you know some prescription medicines can do this as well?
This is why you should tell everyone who prescribes medicines for youdoctors, dentists, or nurse practitionersthat you have diabetes. At the same time, its important for the doctor or managing your diabetes treatment to know of any new medicines you may be taking that were prescribed by someone else.
There are many medicines that can raise blood sugar and cause hyperglycemia, or blood sugar levels above normal. If you arent sure about a medication youve been prescribed, ask your doctor or pharmacist if it will affect your blood sugar before you start taking it.
Common medicines that raise blood sugar levels include:
So Whats Making You High
As diabetics we are constantly striving to maintain a perfect blood glucose level. Having a high fasting reading constantly is a cause for major concern and can definitely affect your hbA1c and by extension your health if not corrected. For 3 or 4 days in a row, plan specific blood glucose testing times. You should also prepare your own meals during this testing period so that you are certain of the carbohydrate content. Try to have your last meal at least 2 hours before bedtime. Check your blood glucose at bedtime, wake up around 3 a.m to test again, and take the final reading at your usual wake-up time. Comparing these results can identify what is the underlying cause of your high blood glucose level in the morning. Sometimes it can also be a combination of issues. The table below is a guideline to follow to assist in identifying the problem. Always seek medical advice from your doctor pertaining to medication dosages and modifications.
|Find the Culprit of your Fasting High Blood Glucose Level|
If your 2 hour post dinner time is close to your bedtime there is no need to test again. If it is more than an hour apart include both tests. These are quite a lot of test which will be done over a couple day. Your fingers will be sore but it will lead to discovering your underlying problem.
Recommended Reading: What Happens In Type 1 Diabetes
What Makes Blood Sugar Level Go Up Or Down
Food, diabetes medications, and exercise have the most result on blood sugar levels the majority of the time, however there are other things that can raise or lower blood glucose. Heres a list of a few of what can make your blood sugar increase, go down, or decrease too much leading to hypoglycemia.
Don’t Miss: How Many Points Does Metformin Lower Blood Sugar
Treating And Managing Hyperglycaemia
If your blood sugar level is slightly high for a short time, emergency treatment wont be necessary. But if it continues to rise you may need to act fast to avoid developing diabetic ketoacidosis .
If your blood sugar level is 15 mmol/l or more, you should check your blood or urine for ketones. If ketones are present, it is likely that you do not have enough insulin in your body. This means you may need to increase your dose or give yourself an extra dose. Talk to your diabetes team about how to do this if you are unsure.
You should also try to drink plenty of sugar-free fluids to prevent dehydration. And if you are feeling unwell, especially if you are vomiting, you should follow any sick day rules you have been given and contact your diabetes healthcare team for advice.
What Is Hyperglycemia
Hyperglycemia is the medical term for high blood sugar . It happens when sugar stays in your bloodstream instead of being used as energy.
For people without diabetes, a healthy blood sugar level is about 70 to 140 milligrams per deciliter of blood . For people with diabetes, though, the target or healthy blood sugar range depends on a number of other factors, like their age, how long theyve had diabetes, and other health conditions they may have. To achieve good long-term glucose control, people with diabetes should focus on the time they spend in their target range, which is typically 70 to 180 mg/dL. Doctors may say you have hyperglycemia if your blood sugar is higher than 130 mg/dL after not eating or drinking for at least 8 hours or if your blood sugar is higher than 180 mg/dL 2 hours after a meal .
For people with diabetes, blood sugar control over the long term is important. Your healthcare team will work with you to evaluate your long-term control by looking at your HbA1c and/or the amount of time your blood sugar is within your target range based on data from a continuous glucose monitor, or CGM, or your blood glucose meter.
Also Check: Type 1 Diabetes In Adults Life Expectancy
When To See A Doctor
If a persons blood sugar levels are high more than three times in a 2-week period without an apparent reason, the National Institute for Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases recommend that they seek medical help.
Any significant change in blood sugar patterns warrants a visit to a doctor. People with diabetes and those at risk of diabetes should also consult a doctor if:
- blood sugar levels become unusually high or low
- well-managed blood sugar levels are suddenly start fluctuating
- people have new or worsening symptoms of diabetes
- they change their medication or stop using it
You May Like: Normal A1c Levels Non Diabetics
Insulin And Blood Sugar
Insulin is an important hormone that helps regulate your blood sugar levels. The pancreas makes insulin. It helps control your blood sugar levels by assisting the cells that absorb sugar from the bloodstream.
If you have type 1 diabetes, your body doesnt make insulin. This means you have to inject insulin every day.
If diet and exercise arent enough to manage blood sugar, those with type 2 diabetes may be prescribed medications to help keep blood sugar levels within target ranges.
If you have type 2 diabetes, your body produces insulin, but may not use it properly or produce enough of it. Your cells dont respond to insulin, so more sugar keeps circulating in the blood.
Exercise can help the cells respond better and be more sensitive to insulin. The proper diet can also help you avoid spikes in blood sugar. This can help keep your pancreas functioning well since high blood sugar levels decrease pancreatic function.
You May Like: What Is A High Blood Sugar Reading
Upswing: Steroids And Water Pills
People take corticosteroids, such as prednisone, to treat rashes, arthritis, asthma, and many other conditions. But they can boost your blood sugar, and may even trigger diabetes in some people. Diuretics that help high blood pressure, also called water pills, can do the same. Some antidepressants also raise or lower blood sugar.
Overlapping Characteristics Of Diabetes And High Blood Pressure
A 2012 study in China focused its research on how obesity, inflammation, oxidative stress, and insulin resistance in patients with type 2 diabetes may influence blood pressure levels.
The study suggests that both conditions diabetes and hypertension result from the onset of low-grade inflammation and that both should be considered as chronic inflammatory diseases.
It is now realized that insulin resistance, which predicts type 2 diabetes, also has a role in the development of hypertension, explains the study. Indeed, hypertension and diabetes substantially share common pathways such as obesity, inflammation, oxidative stress, insulin resistance, and mental stress.
In reality, diabetes and hypertension are found in the same individual more often than would occur by chance, adds the study. The researchers concluded that both conditions are often the result of genetic or environmental factors: diet, weight, tobacco use, stress, and activity level.
Exercise can play a major role in the development and treatment of both conditions.
In the Finnish Diabetes Prevention Study, subjects with a change in moderate-to-vigorous leisure-time physical activity were 49% to 65% less likely to develop diabetes, explains the report.
Then, in the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults study with over 15 years of follow-up, patients engaging in regular exercise saw a 17 percent reduction in their risk of high blood pressure.
Recommended Reading: A1c Definition Of Diabetes
How Does Hyperglycemia Happen
Insulin is a hormone that lets your body use the sugar in your blood, which comes primarily from carbohydrates in the food that you eat. Hyperglycemia happens when your body has too little insulin to use the sugar in your blood.
People with type 1 diabetes can have episodes of hyperglycemia every day. Although this can be frustrating, it rarely creates a medical emergency. Not taking enough insulin can lead to hyperglycemia .
Other things that can cause hyperglycemia include:
- Having trouble seeing or concentrating
- Experiencing stomach pain, nausea, or vomiting
- Having sweet-smelling or fruity breath
- Cuts or sores that do not heal, infections, and unexplained weight loss may also be signs of long-term hyperglycemia.
If you notice any of these symptoms, you should check your blood sugar. If your blood sugar is very high, you should also test for ketones in either your blood or urine.
How Does Lack Of Sleep Raise Your Risk
Itâs hard to know for certain. Many studies have suggested that short sleepers have irregular eating habits, snack more, and are more likely to eat unhealthy foods.
Other research has found that shortchanging sleep can directly affect how the body makes other hormones, which in turn affect blood sugar. For example, when you stay up late, your body makes more of the hormone cortisol, which affects how insulin works.
Also, growing evidence shows that disrupting your bodyâs biological clock by being awake at night can make your cells more resistant to insulin. In one study, researchers altered the circadian rhythms of 16 healthy volunteers by allowing only 5 hours of sleep each night for 5 nights, much like a sleep-deprived workweek. When those volunteers ate food at night a time when the body isnât biologically prepared for a spike in blood sugar their bodies didnât use insulin normally.
What If It Goes Untreated
Hyperglycemia can be a serious problem if you don’t treat it, so it’s important to treat as soon as you detect it. If you fail to treat hyperglycemia, a condition called ketoacidosis could occur. Ketoacidosis develops when your body doesn’t have enough insulin. Without insulin, your body can’t use glucose for fuel, so your body breaks down fats to use for energy.
When your body breaks down fats, waste products called ketones are produced. Your body cannot tolerate large amounts of ketones and will try to get rid of them through the urine. Unfortunately, the body cannot release all the ketones and they build up in your blood, which can lead to ketoacidosis.
Ketoacidosis is life-threatening and needs immediate treatment. Symptoms include:
- Shortness of breath
Talk to your doctor about how to handle this condition.
What Are The Symptoms Of Hyperglycemia
The signs and symptoms include the following:
- High blood sugar
- High levels of sugar in the urine
- Frequent urination
- Increased thirst
Part of managing your diabetes is checking your blood sugar often. Ask your doctor how often you should check and what your blood sugar levels should be. Checking your blood and then treating high blood sugar early will help you avoid problems associated with hyperglycemia.
Read Also: What Is A High Blood Sugar Reading
Does Taking Steroids Increase Blood Sugar Levels
Steroids can increase blood sugar levels in people who have diabetes. It can also increase blood sugar levels in people who do not have diabetes. This can happen because: the liver produces more sugar during steroid treatment.
Causes Of High Blood Sugar
The leading causes of high blood sugar or hyperglycemia include:
Diet: Glucose comes from food, so what you are eating causes high blood sugar. Carbohydrates are the most common culprit as they are broken down into glucose very quickly in the body. High-sugar foods, high-fat foods, and processed foods also cause blood glucose spikes and should be replaced with healthier options.
Stress: When you are stressed, more stress hormones and chemicals are released, which drives blood sugar levels up too. If the stress is only temporary, this is not a serious issue, but if you experience chronic stress or an anxiety disorder, you may experience high blood sugar levels more often.
Metabolic Syndrome: These are a collection of conditions that occur at the same time and increase your risk for type 2 diabetes. High blood pressures, excess fat around the waist, and high cholesterol or triglycerides are examples of these conditions. When these occur in the body together, your risk for diabetes increases as does your blood sugar and the risk for potential complications.
Physical Inactivity: A lack of physical activity contributes to elevated blood sugar. When you are physically active each day, insulin works more efficiently, and your blood sugar can be maintained.
You May Like: What Is A High Blood Sugar Reading
How Is High Blood Sugar Diagnosed
There are different kinds of blood tests that can diagnose hyperglycemia. These include:
Random blood glucose: this test reflects the blood sugar level at a given point in time. Normal values are generally between 70 and 125 mg/dL, as discussed earlier.
Fasting blood glucose: this is a measurement of blood sugar level taken in the early morning prior to eating or drinking anything since the night before. Normal fasting blood glucose levels are less than 100 mg/dL. Levels above 100 mg/dL up to 125 mg/dL suggest prediabetes, while levels of 126 mg/dL or above are diagnostic of diabetes.
Oral glucose tolerance test: this is a test that measures blood glucose levels at given time points after a dose of sugar is consumed. This test is most commonly used to diagnose gestational diabetes.
Glycohemoglobin A1c: is a measurement of glucose that is bound to red blood cells and provides an indication about blood sugar levels over the past 2 to 3 months.
What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of High Blood Sugar Levels
Signs of high blood sugar levels include:
- Peeing a lot: The kidneys respond by flushing out the extra glucose in urine. People with high blood sugar need to pee more often and in larger amounts.
- Drinking a lot: Someone losing so much fluid from peeing that often can get very thirsty.
- Losing weight even though your appetite has stayed the same: If there isn’t enough insulin to help the body use glucose, the body breaks down muscle and stored fat instead in an attempt to provide fuel to hungry cells.
- Feeling tired: Because the body can’t use glucose for energy properly, a person may feel unusually tired.
You May Like: Which Pancreatic Cells Release Insulin And Glucagon
What Causes Blood Sugar To Rise In Non
Dr. Danielle Weiss is the founder of Center for Hormonal Health and Well-Being, a personalized, proactive, patient-centered medical practice with a unique focus on integrative endocrinology. She enjoys giving lectures and writing articles for both the lay public and medical audiences. Dr. Weiss is Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Diego.
High blood sugar or glucose, also called hyperglycemia, occurs when there is too much sugar in the blood. High blood sugar is the primary symptom that underlies diabetes, but it can also occur in people who dont have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, either because of stress or trauma, or gradually as a result of certain chronic conditions.
It is important to manage high blood sugar, even if you dont have diabetes, because elevated blood glucose can delay your ability to heal, increase your risk of infections, and cause irreversible damage to your nerves, blood vessels, and organs, such as your eyes and kidneys. Blood vessel damage from high blood sugar also increases your risk of heart attack and stroke.
What Is Blood Sugar
Blood sugar, also called blood glucose, is sugar thats carried to the cells through the bloodstream. Blood sugar generally refers to the concentration of sugar in your blood at a specific time.
We get sugar from the foods we eat, which is normal, and its the bodys job to regulate blood sugar levels, so they dont go too high or low. When a person has balanced blood sugar, its called homeostasis.
Throughout the day, its not uncommon for blood sugar levels to go up and down based on when you eat and how your body releases a hormone called insulin. If youve just eaten, your blood sugar levels will go up, and then theyll settle back down. If you have diabetes, however, your blood sugar levels may have to be specially managed.
If your blood sugar is always high, you have hyperglycemia, which can happen in people who dont have a good handle on their diabetes. If your blood sugar is below normal, its called hypoglycemia, and this can happen in diabetics if they accidentally use too much of their medication.
So, what role does alcohol play in all of this and how does alcohol affect blood sugar?
Read Also: How Do You Know When Your Sugar Is High
Why Blood Sugar Levels Rise Overnight
When you go to bed, your blood sugar reading is 110, but when you wake up in the morning, it has shot up to 150. Why does this happen?
To understand how blood sugar levels can rise overnight without your eating anything, we have to look at where glucose comes from and where it goes while we sleep.
During the day, the carbohydrates we eat are digested into glucose and absorbed into the bloodstream. Some of this glucose goes to the liver, where it is stored for later use.
At night, while we are asleep, the liver releases glucose into the bloodstream. The liver acts as our glucose warehouse and keeps us supplied until we eat breakfast. The amount of glucose being used is matched by the amount of glucose being released by the liver, so blood sugar levels should remain constant.