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From Grand Island, Nebraska, USA:

I am a school nurse. I have a student who has been insulin dependent for approximately four years. He is a fourth grade student. Approximately six months ago, he began to have behavior problems. He would not do his work, was disruptive in class and with authority in our school, destructive to property around him, was non-verbal, and refused to do blood sugar testing, among other things. How do blood sugars affect behavior? If blood sugars do have an effect, at what level, below 70 mg/dl [3.9 mmol/L] or above 300 mg/dl [16.7 mmol/L] morning or afternoon? Or, is there no significant connection?


Blood sugar fluctuations can feel bad to some people. And while there is no threshold (cut off) for when symptoms of hypoglycemia might happen, low blood sugars are indeed associated with behavior changes and confusion. This may be an explanation for the child’s behavior. Once blood sugar has been ruled out as a cause, it will be important to reinforce school rules and codes of conduct as you would with any child.


Original posting 11 Nov 2004
Posted to Behavior


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