In need of advice

By jaf76 Latest Reply 2013-03-26 10:08:47 -0500
Started 2013-03-03 07:58:35 -0600

Hello out there my name is John. I am on DC. I am in need of some advice for issues with my wifes health. She is T1 and she is having a lot of headaches and just filling nasty. She says she fills drained lately. Her heart is racing at times. We do have a DR appt for her coming up. Most of the time these symptoms that she has, mostly happens after she eats; but sometimes she starts the day off that way. I tested her BG levels and she has been staying in the high 200's. Her highest was 289. And her lowest has been between 189 & 200. I never have levels that high, so I am lost as what to do. I know the DR will probably change her meds, but can anyone help me with ideas of what to do to help her until her DR appt. Thank you so much in advance, and God Bless.

38 replies

Dr John
Dr John 2013-03-26 10:08:47 -0500 Report

I had problems (headaches and malaise) with Lantus and Humalog. I don't have any problems with Novolog, which is manufactured in yeast cells instead of bacteria cells.


Stuart1966 2013-03-08 09:47:38 -0600 Report

Hello Jaf76:

Not everything is always/only the diabetes. Sometimes a headache is indeed JUST a headache! Sounds like any over the counter headache cure is in order, regardless of the actual cause(s)…

Pain does not need to be "endured" trying, waiting to figure it out.

Now that being said, if you want to pin down a diabetic cause… I'd suggest testing three-four hours daily BEFORE lunch, every hour on the hour. You'll use up 3-4 extra strips (sic. daily), but maybe, maybe will catch a low, some drop which never made it on "the radar" before and 2-3 hours later causes said headache(s)?

Another option and have her look up the different types of headaches, see if she can pinpoint the particular type/kind she's getting? If she can find a pattern, ie its the same type day after day… then it might be as simple as a gentle massage of her neck and shoulders, a gentle massage of her jaw, etc., etc. Self massage, or very gentle massage by you for her. Win-win!

Headaches often tend to be nasty symptoms.

Gwen214 2013-03-07 22:12:34 -0600 Report

Every bodies reactions are different, these are great feedback, but the safest route is to call the nurse or doctor's office. Let them know that her appointment is later, but she's been having whatever issue she may have.

MinniPearl 2013-03-07 03:43:21 -0600 Report

Hello! John,

When my blood sugar is that high, I find that if I drink a lot of water, and lay off any startches helps. For example; I won't have cereal, bread, mashed potato's. Anything startchy. I found drinking diet soda would shoot mine up even higher. If I get hungry when my sugar is that high, I eat eggs, and drink a cup of tea or coffee when I get sick of water. I have whole grain bagels which is not that high in startches. Remember what might work for one person might not work for another, because our bodies act differently. I also find that if I take two tylenol helps me with the shakes and stops my heart from racing.
I found out sometimes what I ate before I went to bed makes me feel nasty in the morning, because it will through my blood sugar way up while I am sleeping. My doctor told me not to eat after 6:00 pm.
I wish you the best and hope your wife feels good soon.

deafmack 2013-03-05 09:04:46 -0600 Report

Sorry to hear about your wife having headaches. They could be from not getting enough fluids and being dehydrated. Have her check her blood sugar to see what it is doing. And then drink some water or even better something like G2. Also sliding scale is very old school. I would like to refer you to two books that I find useful. The first book is Think Like a Pancreas by Gary Scheiner. The second book is Using insulin by John Walsh.

jaf76 2013-03-05 11:05:59 -0600 Report

Thank you I will check the books out. Anything helps God bless

Stuart1966 2013-03-08 09:35:22 -0600 Report

Hello Jaf76

Unless you heart is set on "brand new" books, I'd suggest Powell's Books in Seattle. A series of huge warehouses of books in and around Seattle, primarily very gently used books.

Hope it helps

cassistives 2013-03-04 21:49:45 -0600 Report

Hot bath or shower will open your blood vessels n get your "juices" flowing. It tends to help on my sons high days.

Becky McQuaid
Becky McQuaid 2013-03-04 10:56:26 -0600 Report

I too have t1 and have the same problem. I find treating with a can or two of diet coke seems to help. I think it's the caffiene. Also making sure to drink plenty of water. I hope this helps.

CassBen 2013-03-04 07:26:37 -0600 Report

I'm a T! and have had these issues. It seems like everyone here has good advice, but there is one thing I learned that might help and won't hurt anything. HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE. Really, this might help with the racing heart- rate, and maybe the sick feeling too, although lower BG should help there. Additionally, I don't know the "why" of this but my MD says when this is happening I should drink a can or two of diet Coke as well. Hmm…I'll have to ask her about that! Hope your wife is feeling better soon

jaf76 2013-03-04 16:08:03 -0600 Report

You aren't the first person to say diet pop. Will make sure to all my wifes doc. Thank you

jayabee52 2013-03-04 09:53:57 -0600 Report

Hydration may not be the best choice in ALL cases. For instance I need to keep my water weght down due to dialysis treatments. I have a total fluid limitation of 1 litre per 24 hr period. It can be done but it is difficult when one is used to just slamming water by the gallon.

Also for those with congestive heart failure where the pericardial sac is full of water which causes irregular beating, (my 2nd wife had that) fluid restriction was indicated for her as well, plus she was on a lot of diuretics as well.

I believe the "diet" coke is a pain relieving measure due to the caffine in it. Some formulations of aspirin have some caffine as an added ingredient.

jaf76 2013-03-04 16:10:26 -0600 Report

Thanks not going to due anything till we see her doc. Got it moved up to tomorrow. But I am keeping notes on what everyone has said.

Set apart
Set apart 2013-03-04 05:34:16 -0600 Report

I think everyone here has offered great advice. I am a T1 and sometimes the insulin dosage needs to be changed no matter what you're doing! Hope your doc helps with this! I go through stages there are days when I am constantly dropping and then there are days when I need to bolus anything I eat. I make sure I combine protein with low carb meals and snacks, this helps! Walking helps bring those high numbers down, I am a control freak so if I wake up with a high BG reading I walk around kitchen and dining area at least 30 minutes! It's amazing what walking does to bring those numbers down. Low carb seems to be the way to go for now, until you see the doctor. I don't eat more than 15 g carbs per snack, and usually the same for meals and when I don't it's usually not over 30 and I cover my meals with novolog! Good luck!

jaf76 2013-03-04 17:45:26 -0600 Report

Thank you. She just got a new job at a hospital so I think she will be walking more.

SnufflesMichelle 2013-03-03 20:58:37 -0600 Report

Depending on how long until her appointment, she, first needs to get her blood sugar down a lot. 189-200 is high, and her feeling sick is prob. coming from that. I have problems with my blood sugar running high even when I regulate it, so cinnamon pills help me keep it down. And, a diet of low carb and sugars. Also, when your blood sugar is higher you pee more, so drink a lot of water too.

jaf76 2013-03-04 05:01:54 -0600 Report

Thank you for your insight. I am taking everyones suggestions down and when we see my wifes doc we can ask about all this. I am thinking that maybe the whole carb thing may be a lot of her prob. Have to check though. God Bless

red flower lady
red flower lady 2013-03-03 17:41:09 -0600 Report

She needs to get her numbers bak in the normal range and the issues you speak of will get better. It's great that your taking an active part in her care as going it alone is soo hard:) So, portion control, carb counting, healthy foods and exercise will help her as well as yourself.

jaf76 2013-03-03 17:52:21 -0600 Report

I thank you, yes I think we will need to revaluate our diets and look at the carbs. God bless

red flower lady
red flower lady 2013-03-03 18:29:13 -0600 Report

It does take time and energy to do this, but once you get started it gets easier. I have been a type 1 since a very young age, and I have learned to take it one day at a time as even when following the above mentioned, I can have off days. Today I woke up with a bg read of 38 and just ate breakfast, waited rechecks and then did insulin as needed. I know by experience not to freak out on lows or highs and run to dr/hospital, but treat it accordingly. I'm NOT telling you to not see her dr, as I think it will be good for both of you, write down questions or concerns you have and take the list with you. Since your is on insulin hopefully she is on a sliding scale as that will help with her control unless she uses a pump. Good luck to both of you

jaf76 2013-03-03 18:33:37 -0600 Report

Thank you so much. Both of us are still very new to knowing we have diabetes so we are still learning.

sloane 2013-03-03 17:31:56 -0600 Report

High blood sugars do make you feel awful and do cause headaches. Once you get better control over the diabetes—things will start to even out. Lots of good lean meat and avoidance of sugars will help as well as drinking water not juice or diet soda. Family support is important, you are a caring great person and together you will win this battle-Although it seems uphill now, it gets better. My two sons are doing great; they have had their challenges, but we got through them together. Hang tough! and Bless you my friend..

jaf76 2013-03-03 17:55:12 -0600 Report

Thank you so much. You are very kind. I think we need to redo our diet alittle. I am also going to check with her doc and see what else he suggests. God bless you

Kirla 2013-03-03 12:08:05 -0600 Report

When diagnosed I had pretty high blood sugar. I started to test before and after eating. I slowly cut back on high carb starchy foods (most foods containing more than 5-6 net carbs per serving) and my after meals spikes slowly came down. If you decide to cut carbs you got to watch for lows. Anyway this is what helped me and I believe it can help some people with type 2 diabetes. It might also help some type 1 people. I also believe that some type 1 diabetics can also develop insulin resistance. You might want to ask the doctor if this is happening with your wife. Something to think about anyway.

Feb 2009 I was diagnosed with a fasting blood sugar of 366 and A1C of 14.1. Started to eat a salad every day at supper. Also started to eat lots of low carb vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, cucumbers, spinach, pickles and sauerkraut. Started to drink 8+ glasses of water every day.

I then bought a meter and started to test my blood sugar before and after each meal. At first I was testing 2 hours after each meal and when my numbers dropped a lot I started testing 1 hour after meals. I was testing 5-7 times a day. I cut back or eliminated foods that spiked my blood sugar more than 50 points after eating.

By testing I found that foods like bread and most foods made of grains along with pasta, rice, corn, potatoes, oatmeal, cereals, chips, crackers, cakes, cookies, candy, soda, fruits, fruit juices, milk and most foods that contain more than 5-6 net carbs per serving as found on the package label all spiked my blood sugar. Some people can cut back on these foods and some people like me have to stop eating them.

After about 6-8 weeks my blood sugar readings were almost normal levels.

I found by reducing and eliminating high carb starchy foods helped me a lot. By adding small amounts of chicken, beef, pork or a hard boiled egg to my meals helped reduce blood sugar spikes also.

Good luck

jaf76 2013-03-03 12:32:15 -0600 Report

Thank you very much. I will ask her doc about the insulin resistance. We have be changing what we eat. No fried foods.She eats a lot if salads. But there are other things I think we can change also. Thank you

Kirla 2013-03-03 13:13:53 -0600 Report

Salads are good, but you got to watch the dressings. Some have lots of sugar and carbs in them. Got to read the labels. Fried foods will not spike your blood sugar unless your frying potatoes or other high carb foods. Cutting back on fried foods is good for lowering cholesterol.

I forgot to mention that high blood sugar levels will make her feel tried and weak sometimes. When your blood sugar goes above 220 or so the liver starts to dump blood sugar in the urine. When this happens your no longer getting the energy from the foods you eat and will be tired a lot.

jaf76 2013-03-03 10:20:10 -0600 Report

Thank you. We have a pretty diet for the most part. It seems like no matter what she eats she goes high. It's almost like her body doesn't even try to balance the sugar at all. She can eat crackers and still go high. I will see about moving doc appt up. God Bless.

jayabee52 2013-03-03 12:07:10 -0600 Report

I wouild expect crackers would make her go high since they are simple carbs and are are converted easily to glucose. You stated that "we have a pretty [healthy?]diet". A lot of folks say they have healthy diets, but when one gets them to break it down it turns out to me not so healthy after all.

Example: When first Dx'd my Dr told me to "eat healthy" I interpreted it meaning "eat light", so I would load up on rice cakes (after all they were light, right?). I had NO IDEA of the carb content of those puppies! And my BG readings showed it when next I saw Dr.

There are many reasons why your wife may be having such a difficulty. It could be something related to her heart, but that is best addressed by your Dr.

Praying you find a good reason and that you can deal with it without a lot of difficulty,


jaf76 2013-03-03 12:34:49 -0600 Report

Thank you James. I think maybe the whole carb thing is something we need to watch more. I am going to call her doc tomorrow and see if my wife can get in sooner.

Lentyl 2013-03-03 11:52:44 -0600 Report

Any grain or grain product weill cause BG's to go high. It might be an idea to eliminate these foods from your diet plan to see if that makes a difference. From my personal experience I've found that grain and grain products push my readings up. Not eating grain and grain products can do no harm and just might do some good. I hope that this helps. God Bless you.

Anonymous 2013-03-03 10:08:38 -0600 Report

At the risk of being insensitive and I don't want to be, it's hard to give advice to what you have described because of the general information given. For instance I might suggest a walk for feeling better but have no idea of her current health status. Then there is WHY she has high bg levels, but we do not know what she eats or her health history, so my advice would be to see if you can move that DR appointment closer if possible before you take a suggestion from someone that might do more harm than good given the limited information. Hope she gets better and kudos to you for being by her side!