Diabetes Blood Glucose Levels and Blurred Vision

Published: 09th March 2010
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If we hear the term "blood sugar" we may have different ideas about it; however, this term is used in physiology where it refers to glucose in the blood. There are other sugars such as fructose and galactose which also exist, but, as they are relatively inert, only glucose is found to be a controlling factor for metabolic regulation.

Glucose is used in the cells of your body as an energy source and metabolic intermediate. Glucose travels through the body from the intestines through the blood. For those who do not have diabetes blood glucose levels in the human body should be maintained between 4 and 6mL. This means that the amount of glucose in the blood of a healthy adult man should be between 3.3 and 7g.

After eating a meal your blood glucose level rises. Generally two hours after a meal you will notice that your blood glucose level decreases. Your blood glucose level is at its lowest level in the morning. When the blood glucose levels are not within a normal range, high or low blood sugar may result.

Some of the symptoms of high blood sugar include thirst, hunger, blurred vision, frequent urination, lethargy and headaches. If the blood sugar is extremely high a person may experience difficulty breathing, vomiting and increased ketones in the urine. Ketones will appear in your urine when your body is burning fat as energy.

High blood sugar levels may be an indication of a variety of problems. One of two problems can result from high blood sugar. One problem would be the body's cells become "hungry" due to a lack of glucose. The second problem is the excess glucose found in the blood could cause damage to blood vessels, nerves or the eyes. If hyperglycemia (high levels of glucose in blood) remains untreated for a long time, more problems can arise.

On the flip side, when the level of glucose in blood is too low, hypoglycemia results, also called insulin shock. There are three possible reasons for this: 1) when glucose is used by the body very rapidly; 2) when it takes too long for glucose to be released into the blood stream, and 3) when the insulin level in the bloodstream is too high.

Hypoglycemia is a common problem for those with diabetes. Hypoglycemia results when a person with diabetes injects too much insulin or takes too much diabetes medicine. It is also possible for this to happen when a person hasn't eaten enough food or has increased physical activity without increasing food intake.

Problems with vision are mostly associated with hyperglycemia as it directly affects the eyes. This is called diabetic retinopathy and may cause progressive damage to the retinas. There are two possible diagnoses of diabetic retinopathy: non-proliferative and proliferative. Non-proliferative retinopathy is generally associated with the early stages of the disorder. Proliferative diabetic retinopathy is much more severe as new vessels start growing within the eye and may bleed. In extreme cases, proliferative diabetic retinopathy can lead to blindness. Hypoglycemia might cause secondary sight problems, but it is not in direct correlation with vision issues; however, because of general fatigue and irritability, which can be caused by low blood sugar, it may cause double vision or blurred vision.

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