{Sunday Survey} High or Low?

by Leighann on July 17, 2011

Last week I asked:

How often does your d-kid get to interact with another child with diabetes?

I’m switching gears this week…

Recently on Twitter, my friend Ginger Vieira who is the community manager for dLife, in addition to writing and v-logging at Living in Progress, asked if we’d rather eliminate low OR high blood sugars. I was very quick to respond:

I’d say low blood sugars bc they pose an immediate threat. High BG’s can be corrected. I’d rather Q be high on a playdate than low!

If you could say that Q would never have a low BG, it would give her every freedom other kids have!

For me, I feel that most of Q’s restrictions come from not wanting her to go low when she is with someone who isn’t trained to respond properly. If she didn’t go low, then she could get dropped off at gymnastics or day camp or girl scouts or a play date. I can deal with a high blood sugar when I pick her up, if that’s the case.

But people get very nervous about how to test her blood sugar (if Q isn’t capable) and heaven forbid, how to use the darn Glucagon kit! Not to mention that it completely freaks them out when you use the words unconscious and seizure.

And I get very nervous that the situation won’t get handled!

Ginger Tweet

My question this week is:

If you could eliminate low blood sugars OR high blood sugars from your child’s life with diabetes, which would you choose?

High Low Survey

According to those who responded to the survey, 60 percent would rather end low blood sugars, while the other 40% would end high ones. The comments here and on Facebook were interesting and I think that (and this is my unscientific observation) that many parents of younger children want to eliminate lows because of immediate threats and the possibility that their young child can’t handle it themselves (or that caregivers can’t), while parents of older children aren’t as worried about that.

I’d love for you to leave a comment telling us which you choose and why.

Have an idea for a Sunday Survey? Please let me know.

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Amy @ Tiny Blessings July 17, 2011 at 9:18 am

Lows, absolutely. Then we could all get some SLEEP! My DD is prone to crazy unpredictable lows at night, having caused two seizures to date. So even with the CGM, I still get up a couple of times each night to check on her. If I knew she wasn’t going to go low, I would be content to rely on the CGM’s alarm for highs.


2 Angela (Toucan Scraps) July 17, 2011 at 10:17 am

we tried a sensor last week that talks to my daughter’s pump. It has an automatic low suspend function. So when she went too low it switched off the insulin delivery for 2 hours preventing serious hypo. And it works.

Unfortunately we don’t have funding for fulltime sensors, only 5 every 3 months and each one lasts 6 days.


3 Angela (Toucan Scraps) July 17, 2011 at 10:15 am

For us highs are the biggest problem. My son has aspergers as well as diabetes and if his blood sugars are high his aspergers becomes nearly impossible to manage. And high blood sugars at school affect my daughters ability to concentrate and learn.

We find hypos and much quicker and easier to deal with than highs for both kids.

Although nightime hypos do cause me sleeplessness.


4 Michelle Gonzalez July 17, 2011 at 11:02 am

I voted for highs. While I don’t like lows either, and they do scare me, highs are what cause the long-term damage and for us they are more difficult to correct than lows. Also, my daughter is older, 11, and has a CGM to help warn her of impending lows – so lows are rarely an issue for us any longer.


5 Mike's Diabetes Blog July 17, 2011 at 12:16 pm

If you eliminate HIGH blood sugars, they wouldn’t need insulin. If they didn’t need insulin then they wouldn’t experience lows either!!



6 Melissa July 17, 2011 at 12:28 pm

I went with High blood sugars, we do have some lows but highs seem to be our particular curse. I can treat a low pretty quickly and get things back on track but sometimes I can’t get her to come down no matter how much insulin I pump into her. Weeks of highs get so frustrating. I’d rather lose the sleep checking for the lows.


7 Amy July 17, 2011 at 5:26 pm

I answered ‘highs’ because I feel like the hidden (for now) dangers and results of those highs are adding up little by little. Loes I can handle and treat. Highs are more stubborn and never behave with the same treatment!


8 Laura July 17, 2011 at 7:03 pm

I voted for lows! My 6 y.o. cannot tell the difference between 70 and 35. They both feel low to her, but the 35 is the one that scares me more.


9 Denise aka Mom of Bean July 17, 2011 at 8:58 pm

I first thought ‘lows of course!’ but then after thinking about it and reading the comments and after the afternoon of highs not responding to repeated boluses and a hefty basal increase, I totally went with ‘highs’ instead.
So much easier to bring up a low than bring down a high, at least for Bean. Don’t like lows; they scare the crap out of me. But Bean has always felt those and has never (knock on wood) had trouble coming up from them, and doesn’t have them often, so they really aren’t that big of an issue for us.


10 Tabitha July 18, 2011 at 12:49 pm

I am rather new to this. My dd10 was just diagnosed Tuesday. Endo says we don’t need to check her through the night, but they did in the hospital and caught a scary low.

Right now, my husband and I are checking her at night. What do you all do? I find I can’t sleep if I haven’t checked. Help!


11 Jessica P July 24, 2011 at 7:12 pm

@Angela, Just out of curiosity, which pump do you have that has a low suspension feature? We use the Medtronic Revel and love the CGM, but it doesn’t suspend automatically.

With the CGM, our lows are pretty much eliminated, so I guess I would vote against the “highs” because they’re much more frequent and harder to get under control, especially those post-meal spikes!


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