Last week both boys returned to school after the Easter break. For R this was his first day at school since diagnosis of Type 1 Diabetes. I took him in by car, his brother went on ahead (out of choice) on the bus. The school was great – showed me the medical room, explained to both of us what procedures are in place for the two other pupils with Type 1 and generally reassured me that they’d take good care of him while he’s there. I was about to leave when R needed to do a quick blood test as it was about two hours after breakfast. And he had a bad hypo – his blood was 2.3 – so what does that mean?
For non-diabetics our blood sugar levels hover around 5.0. R was sky-high at 30.0 just before he was diagnosed. Now we aim to keep him between 4.0 and 10.0. Anything below 4 is an indication of hypoglycaemia and if you follow that link you’ll see that it explains that having a hypo can simply mean feeling ‘spaced’, lightheaded and odd right through to becoming unconscious, slipping into a coma or ultimately death.
Scary stuff added to the daily life of every Type 1 Diabetic.
Fortunately for R he ate some dextrose tablets and within an hour he was back up at a normal level and he could go into class. So what caused this hypo? He’d eaten a large bowl of porridge only two hours before and it’s a slow release carb – greatly loved by GI dieters – it fills you up and should help to keep your blood glucose levels nice and stable. However, add a growing boy and a large dose of anxiety about returning to school, being the centre of attention and having to deal with injecting and testing – the whole newness of it – and his blood glucose levels hit the floor.
A new note to add to my mental filing cabinet about R and his diabetes – nerves give him hypos.