The Chains On My Mood Swings Just Snapped

One of the known side effects of extreme blood sugar levels is the occasional mood swing. The problem with mood swings is that they aren’t uniquely a Diabetes related symptom. So how does one know if one’s bad mood is related or not? That’s easy: test your blood sugar.

“I’m ready to go off the deep end because what are the highs without the lows…”

S. Tellaz

Your mood is a subjective thing, which is why it’s difficult to tell whether it’s related to a condition or simply being in a bad mood. And as people have often said, never in the history of humankind has someone calmed down at being told to calm down.

Personally, when my blood sugar has the occasional spike, I turn into what could easily be described as a “cranky-ass biatch”, to use the proper vernacular. This isn’t a common change in mood associated to high blood sugar. But like everything else with Diabetes, it can be subjective to the person.

But extreme lows have shown to cause forms of aggression as well. There’s a good article in Medical News Today that outlines a good deal of this and can be read here:

I remember one time, in high school, I suffered an extreme low. This was well before the advent of CGM and interstitial blood glucose testing, so my meter was the only means of checking my levels. My meter was normally kept in my locker. I remember starting to feel woozy in class, right before lunch. As teenagers can sometimes be, I was foolish in thinking I could stave it off by staying still in class until the lunch bell rang. I was wrong.

Within fifteen minutes, I couldn’t concentrate, I was groggy, sweaty and all I wanted to do was go to sleep. I remember the guy seated next to me, poking me and asking if I was okay. When the bell rang, I walked my way down to the lunch line and stood to wait. As I stood there, I felt a sense of hyper-vigilance and something akin to paranoia.

Ironically, I had forgotten my money for lunch that day, and who else but my mother walks into the school and approaches the lunch line and provides me with some cash. I can’t remember if she realized that I had forgotten to bring cash or what, but I recall having a very aggressive response to her sudden appearance at my school.

Once I had some food in my system and things returned to normal, I started having some vague recollection of the harsh words I had used on my mother. I apologized when I got home, but it definitely took some explaining to make her understand that I wasn’t in control of my own faculties.

And this is a common occurrence with a number of the relationships I have had in my youth and my teens. Many friendships and relationships have been soured or ruined due to my temper, much of which could have been attributed to my blood sugar levels. And it definitely doesn’t help to have someone saying, “You’re cranky!” That usually only results in more aggression.

These days, I’ve managed to work it out in such a way that when I begin to notice my own foul mood, I test my levels and adjust accordingly. This not only helps with maintaining a better percentage of “time in range”, but it spares my family from my moods (at least most of the time).

We can’t always tell when our mood begins to foul. And we sometimes have no choice but to depend on someone else pissing us off by telling us we’re crabby in order to realize it. Test your blood sugar levels regularly and especially if you feel as though you’re in a foul mood. ☯

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I am a practitioner of the martial arts and student of the Buddhist faith. I have been a Type 1 Diabetic since I was 4 years old and have been fighting the uphill battle it includes ever since. I enjoy fitness and health and looking for new ways to improve both, as well as examining the many questions of life. Although I have no formal medical training, I have amassed a wealth of knowledge regarding health, Diabetes, martial arts as well as Buddhism and philosophy. My goal is to share this information with the world, and perhaps provide some sarcastic humour along the way. Welcome!

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