We Value Your Privacy

We and our partners use technology such as cookies on our site to personalise content and ads, provide social media features, and analyse our traffic. Click below to consent to the use of this technology across the web. You can change your mind and change your consent choices at anytime by returning to this site.

Update Consent
Loading ...

Dangerous low blood sugar levels

Updated February 21, 2019

Low blood sugar, or hypoglycaemia, is defined as anything below 70 in a blood glucose test. Normal readings are in the range of 70 to 120. Low blood sugar is a common problem for people taking insulin or other medications for diabetes. It is easily solved if dealt with quickly but can be dangerous if blood sugar levels drop to below 40.

Loading ...


Low blood sugar usually occurs because a person takes too much diabetes medication, skips or delays a meal or engages in more physical activity than expected.

Initial Symptoms

Most episodes of low blood sugar are mild, with the most typical symptoms including feeling shaky, lightheaded or slightly nauseated; having hand tremors; perspiring; and having heart palpitations.

Serious Symptoms

Dangerous low blood sugar levels can cause confusion, antagonistic behaviour, fainting or seizures. Any of these can occur when blood sugar levels drop below 40.


Severe hypoglycaemia is rarely directly fatal, but it creates great potential for accidents during driving or from falling. In addition, seizures can cause brain damage.


Anyone taking insulin or other diabetes medications should always have a blood glucose meter available and carry carbohydrate foods along to counteract low blood sugar symptoms.

Loading ...

About the Author

Shelley Moore is a journalist and award-winning short-story writer. She specializes in writing about personal development, health, careers and personal finance. Moore has been published in "Family Circle" magazine and the "Milwaukee Sentinel" newspaper, along with numerous other national and regional magazines, daily and weekly newspapers and corporate publications. She has a Bachelor of Science in psychology.

Loading ...