Can Diabetes Make You Sleepy?

It's normal to feel tired throughout the day every now and then, but if you are not managing your diabetes properly it could be affecting your energy levels. Diabetes can directly cause fatigue due to high or low blood sugar levels. High blood glucose causes your blood to become “sludgy,” which slows down circulation. When this occurs, cells can’t get the oxygen and nutrients they need. On the other hand, low sugar levels also cause fatigue. This occurs because when sugar levels are low there isn't enough fuel for your cells to work well.

Additionally, stress can also make you feel fatigued. If you are feeling burned out about having to manage your diabetes every day, this could be causing you to feel tired. Your exercise routine and diet can also have an effect on how tired you feel throughout the day.

Fatigue and Other Medical Conditions

Diabetics are susceptible to many different conditions, and it is important to know what other diabetes-related complications could be causing fatigue. One complication to look out for is infection. Often a diabetic may have an infection that he or she is not aware of.

It takes a lot of energy to fight off an infection, something which can cause fatigue and a spike in blood sugar levels. Urinary tract or bladder infections are very common conditions that diabetics should watch out for. Bladder infections often hurt, but sometimes have no symptoms, except for that of fatigue.

Another thing to watch out for is undiagnosed heart disease. If you are getting tired after doing tasks that used to be a breeze, it may be time to have your heart checked out. Certain medications can also have side effects like fatigue. Drugs for diabetes, blood pressure, depression, pain, and other issues can cause fatigue. Always read medication labels and communicate with your doctor about medication side effects.

How to Fight Fatigue

Use these five simple tips to fight off fatigue:

  1. Exercise regularly. If you move more, you will have more energy. Research has shown that people who take a brisk 30-minute walk daily are less tired than people who are idle. Try to choose an activity that you will enjoy and do it for 30 to 60 minutes a day. If you don't have time to work out for extended periods of time, sneak in shorter periods of exercise whenever you can. Simply make sure it adds up to 30 to 60 minutes per day.
  2. Watch what you eat. Eat three healthy meals and a snack during the day to keep your blood sugar levels steady. Include healthy carbohydrates from fruits, vegetables and whole grains in your diet. Make sure to eat lean protein from sources such as beans, tofu, fish or skinless chicken breasts.
  3. Skip that extra cup of coffee, especially late in the day. Caffeine can keep you awake and disrupt your sleep. It can also make it harder to control your blood sugar if you are not careful.
  4. Make sure you're getting enough sleep. Many people with diabetes struggle with sleep apnea, which causes a person to briefly stop breathing several times at night. Some other symptoms of sleep apnea include snoring, feeling sleepy during the day, having trouble concentrating, and waking up with a headache or sore throat. Sleep apnea is treatable, and once treated, you should sleep better at night, which will give you more daytime energy.
  5. Stay hydrated throughout the day. You can become fatigued if you're dehydrated. Try to drink at least eight to nine glasses of fluids a day.

Sources: WebMD and DiabetesSelfManagement.com
Photo: Pexels

Get a Free Diabetes Meal Plan

Get a free 7-Day Diabetes Meal Plan from Constance Brown-Riggs who is a Registered Dietitian-Certified Diabetes Educator and who is also a national spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.

Just enter in your email below to download your free Diabetes Meal Plan.

By clicking Submit, you agree to send your info to InformationAboutDiabetes.com who may contact you with updates and information and we agree to use it according to our privacy policy.

More Articles

It is estimated that 80,000 children and adolescents each year are diagnosed with juvenile diabetes. Juvenile diabetes is diagnosed when the body...

As the summer months come to an end, we throw aside our swimsuits and bring out our favorite team jerseys! In America, fall means football, and...

The medical community relies heavily on the goodwill of its citizens, as giving blood and organ donations help save thousands of lives every year...

Evidence is mounting that consuming black cumin helps to manage type 2 diabetes. The spice lowered blood glucose...

It's not uncommon to spend several years living with type 2 diabetes and not even know you have the condition. Despite regular check-ups with your...

More Articles

Type 2 diabetes has become so common in Western culture and media that this often lifelong, serious condition doesn't really raise an eyebrow...

Limiting our intake of highly processed foods, and eating more whole and lightly processed fare can boost our nutrient and fiber intake, lower...

Lantus is a once a day insulin injection that is taken at the same time every day. It replaces anywhere from the average three to five insulin...

Improving your A1C reading requires you to maintain consistently healthy blood...

Just because you have diabetes doesn't mean you can't help your community by being a blood donor. When persons with diabetes maintain good control...

Most of us do not regularly keep the fruit that scientists call Fortunella margarita in our refrigerator. That these small, yellow-orange...

A diagnosis of diabetes usually comes with a list of recommended lifestyle changes. To make these diet and exercise...

Having diabetes affects your body’s ability to handle hot, humid weather, and steamy temperatures can degrade diabetes supplies. But all of this...

Fashion and function come together in clothing developed by AnnaPS, making life a bit more comfortable and convenient for insulin users. The...

Not only is dry skin uncomfortable, but scratched or cracked skin is also susceptible to bacterial and fungal infections – common medical...

One way to ensure our body gets a variety of nutrients is eating nutrient-dense foods, and one of the most nutrient-dense foods on our planet is...

Financial aid and scholarship money are available for people with diabetes, but acquiring it requires an investment of time and patience. Whether...

Any sweetener you use to replace table sugar is a sugar substitute. One type of sugar substitute is artificial sweetener. Three other types...

Smoking is a proven health hazard for everyone, but it is an especially dangerous habit for those with diabetes. Research shows that smokers with...

While life on the road can be tough on musicians, it’s especially challenging for those battling diabetes. Some musicians have to check their...