Wilderness: Diabetic Reaction Topic Guide
Diabetic Reaction: There are two types of diabetes, type 1 and type 2. There are two types of diabetic reactions; 1) low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) and 2)high blood sugar (hyperglycemia). Symptoms of hypoglycemia include dizziness; headache; rapid onset of cool, pale, moist, and clammy skin; rapid pulse; and shallow breathing. Treatment is to have the person with diabetes suffering the reaction eat or drink something with sugar such as juice, candy, or another sweet substance. Hyperglycemia is less common and the symptoms can occur over several days. Medical treatment is generally needed.
Insulin Reaction An insulin reaction occurs when an individual with diabetes experiences hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and becomes confused or unconscious. Causes of insulin reaction include improper medication dosing, exercise, or skipping meals. Common symptoms of a mild insulin reaction include dizziness, irritability, hunger, shakiness, rapid heart beat, and sweating. Treatment is generally sugar drinks, tablets, or wafers and monitoring insulin levels.