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How To Lower Blood Sugar Quickly

Medically reviewed by Jezreel Esguerra, MD · General Practitioner

Written by Lennie Daluz · Updated Mar 03, 2023

    How To Lower Blood Sugar Quickly

    Hyperglycemia or high blood sugar is defined as a blood sugar level exceeding 125 mg/dL in the fasted state or more than 180 mg/ dL 2 hours after a meal for people without diabetes. People who have diabetes mellitus (DM) or are at risk of getting DM often have different targets. And so they need to keep an eye on their blood sugar as part of monitoring their condition. In this article, you will learn some tips on how to lower blood sugar quickly in case it rises.

    First, Recognize the Signs of Hyperglycemia

    Not all persons with hyperglycemia have been diagnosed with diabetes. Therefore, not everyone may be familiar with the signs of hyperglycemia and how to lower blood sugar quickly.

    If you experience symptoms like frequent urination and increased thirst along with weight loss and dehydration, then you may have high blood sugar.

    Patients who have DM and are on insulin have to watch out for these signs. This is because they may warn of an impending hyperglycemic crisis, which can lead to a coma if left untreated. One type of hyperglycemic crisis is diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA).  This can also present with symptoms like nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. Paying attention to signs and symptoms can help you identify hyperglycemia fast.

    Second, Measure Your Blood Sugar

    Once you notice something is off, make sure to get a proper blood sugar reading. This can be accomplished using a fingertip glucose meter.

    Check that the disposable strips are not expired to ensure an accurate reading. For people with diabetes, the usual target blood sugar is between 80 to 130 mg/ dL in the fasting state and less than 180 mg/ dL two hours after meals.

    It is important to measure blood sugar levels. This is because some symptoms that occur in a state of high blood sugar can also happen when you have low blood sugar or hypoglycemia.

    It is not about getting the exact value per se, but knowing the trend of the blood sugar level which guides the next course of action.

    Third, Lower Blood Sugar Levels and Monitor Regularly

    Common causes of hyperglycemia in those with diabetes include:

    • Infections
    • Non-compliance to sugar-lowering medications

    Tips on how to lower blood sugar fast in an emergency include:

    • Hydration
    • Exercise
    • Administration of insulin 


    Drinking water may help bring down blood sugar since it can dilute the sugar in the blood and replace the fluids you lost from frequent urination. However, in cases that require individuals to lower blood sugar fast, such as in cases of DKA, intravenous hydration under medical care is more effective.


    Exercising, in theory, is one answer for how to lower your blood sugar level quickly. Physical activity redirects excess blood glucose to muscles as a source of energy. However, regular exercise is most effective in lowering blood sugar. Healthcare professionals often prescribe exercise as one of the first lifestyle modifications for those who have a high risk of developing diabetes.

    One important thing to remember though is that exercise can worsen DKA. After checking your blood glucose use a urine ketone test strip if you have one to first confirm that you do not have elevated ketones before attempting to exercise to lower your blood sugar level quickly.

    Administration of Insulin

    If you have high blood sugar levels and you are on insulin, it may be necessary to increase the dose of your insulin or do a bolus dose.

    Some individuals are placed on a sliding scale insulin regimens, with different dose ranges for pre-meal and nighttime insulin based on the blood sugar level measured every day.

    Make sure to discuss with your doctor how to compute how much insulin you need to inject when hyperglycemia occurs when you are on insulin. For those not on insulin, it may be given under medical supervision in the emergency room. Blood sugar levels can be rechecked after 15 to 30 minutes after receiving the bolus insulin.

    lower blood sugar quickly

    Lastly, Know When To See a Doctor

    If this is the first time you are experiencing symptoms of hyperglycemia, definitely head to the emergency room.

    They may run some tests to determine if you have diabetes and refer you to an endocrinologist.

    Depending on the results of your tests and your risk factors, you may be started on blood sugar-lowering medications.

    In the case of diabetes, early diagnosis and consistent monitoring are very important to prevent long-term complications such as leg amputation, vision loss, kidney problems, stroke, and heart attack.

    Even if you are managing your diabetes, you still need to consult a doctor regularly.

    If you feel like your condition is not improving after following your doctor’s instructions, seek medical help. Healthcare providers know how to lower blood sugar quickly in an emergency. And they have access to the necessary medications and treatments for you.

    Key Takeaways

    Hyperglycemia is a problem that plagues those who have undiagnosed or uncontrolled diabetes.
    Knowing what to do and how to lower blood sugar quickly in an emergency can be beneficial. This is especially true if you are at high risk of developing diabetes or know someone you care about who has it.
    Remember that when simple home hacks fail to lower blood sugar, medical interventions can be life-saving.

    Learn more about Diabetes here.


    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

    Medically reviewed by

    Jezreel Esguerra, MD

    General Practitioner

    Written by Lennie Daluz · Updated Mar 03, 2023

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