I recall an event that happened when I was a student at a western varsity in Nigeria, it was a night before our final paper, a 3-unit paper. Esther had been in the faculty since morning, she was loved of everyone because of her amiable nature and how she loved to help out. She was very intelligent and she never kept knowledge to herself. I was just coming back from an eatery where I had dinner when I heard a scream, looking in the direction where the noise came from, I saw my course mates around Esther trying to pull her up from the floor. She had collapsed. I was puzzled, we were studying together just now, what could have happened? I hurried to the scene, picked up her things and followed the small group as they rushed her to the clinic.
I was told Esther had a condition known as hypoglycemia. I did not know what it was so I did a little research. Here’s what I found out.
Hypoglycemia is a condition also referred to as low blood sugar or low blood glucose. Glucose is an important source of energy for the human body and this glucose is derived from food, especially carbohydrate-rich food. So when the blood sugar or glucose decreases below the normal sugar level acceptable by the human body, hypoglycemia sets in. it is characterized by symptoms such as dizziness, clumsiness, weakness, unusual feeling of hunger, confusion, shakiness. The situation may also eventually result in fainting and if not addressed quickly, coma and sometimes death.
It can be easily arrested by taking doses of sugar or glucose-rich food. This is to up the level of sugar, glucose available for the body’s use in the blood stream.
There are several notable causes of hypoglycemia. One very common cause is diabetes medications. These medications usually fight too much sugar in the system. Sometimes when not regulated properly or monitored, these medications can lead to a fall in the blood sugar that is below what the body can work with resulting in hypoglycemia. Another major cause is skipping of meals, and bad eating habits. Bad eating habits are unhealthy because this causes a steady drop in the blood sugar. Usually, this doesn’t happen overnight except in severe cases.
Esther had a D in that course as she had to come to the exam hall with drip from the varsity’s clinic. She had a bad eating habit, which had become too normal for her. That incidence was a lesson for all not just Esther. It is advisable to all diabetic patients and even non-diabetic patients to test their blood level sugar regularly and to eat healthy. This is because the symptoms of hypoglycemia can come upon the victim rather rapidly, and these symptoms if not arrested on time may lead to coma and even death.