Recreational drug use can seriously interfere with proper diabetes care and pose a serious threat to your health. Here are some of the ways in which certain drugs can be detrimental to your wellbeing, especially if you have diabetes.
Cocaine is a highly addictive drug derived from the leaves of the coca plant. According to Diabetes.co.uk, it is classified as illegal and very harmful. Since this drug causes users not to feel hunger or exhaustion, it can be particularly dangerous for diabetics. Without proper rest and nourishment, you can greatly increase your risk of hypoglycemia. You may also experience symptoms of this low blood sugar disorder and mistake them for drug effects, which can be very dangerous. While on the drug, it is easy to forget to use insulin, which can cause dangerously high blood sugar levels (hyperglycemia).
Ecstasy is an illegal chemical drug that typically comes in a tablet form. Like cocaine, this drug can suppress appetite, a dangerous side effect for diabetics who need to keep a regular meal schedule. It also gives the user a burst of energy, which usually causes them to stay up for hours and get very little sleep. Both of these can lead to hypoglycemia, notes Diabetes Health. People on this drug often experience dehydration as well, which can be very dangerous for diabetics, since they are already more prone to this.
This hallucinogenic drug is created from fungus and chemicals. Both illegal and dangerous, LSD causes the user to go on "trips" or experience hallucinations, things that are not really happening. LSD often distorts time and space for users. This is dangerous for diabetics who need to use insulin regularly - they will often forget or not realize how much time has passed. As with some other illegal drugs, this substance can cause users to go a long time without sleep, and it generally increases the risk for hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia, according to Diabetes.co.uk.
Some seemingly innocuous drugs can also come with severe warnings for diabetics. Alcohol, often seen as a safe alternative to illegal drugs, can easily send a healthy blood glucose level up to unhealthy levels. According to Diabetes Health, you should limit your intake to one or two drinks per night, and they should not include sugary ingredients. Regularly test your blood sugar while using alcohol.
Caffeine is largely considered safe, and even beneficial, for diabetics, notes Diabetes.co.uk. But coffee and tea drinks from the coffee shop are often packed with added sugar so ask to see the nutrition facts before you decide what to order. If it’s just a plain cup of coffee you’re after, be sure to drink it black or with a splash of nonfat milk.
It is also good to check with your physician before taking any prescription drugs, or even over-the-counter medications. If you think you need them, your doctor can assess your health and give you expert advice. It is always best to check with a physician if you are unsure about how anything might affect your diabetes.