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Let’s talk hypos. How do they impact your life?

Hypoglycaemia (also known as hypos or lows) is a condition that occurs when your blood glucose level (BGL) has dropped too low, below 4mmol/L. Hypos are a part of life for many people living with diabetes who use insulin.  

In Australia, about 400,000 people use insulin to help manage their diabetes. 

According to research a person with type 1 diabetes averages 138 hypos per year. Of course, you may have more, or maybe less than this – everyone’s experience is different. 

Living with diabetes can be challenging. Call our Helpline on 1800 177 055 if you need help or want to talk.  

Time adds up

It can people an average of about 15 minutes to recover from a hypo. However, it may take some people more or less time than this.   

Costs add up

Jelly beans, juice, glucose tabs or a soft drink – which fast-acting carbohydrate do you turn to when you have a hypo?  

If you drink a juice box every hypo, in one year you will have spent about $207! 

See for yourself with #HyposAddUp

Have you ever wondered how many hypos you’ve had? Our new #HyposAddUp calculator can add them up for you!  

Share the infographic on social media to raise awareness of hypos. It’s also a great conversation starter next time you want to talk about hypos with your healthcare professional.  

Disclaimer The content of the #HyposAddUp calculator is intended for information and awareness raising purposes only. It is not to be viewed as a health appraisal or advice from Diabetes Australia.   

Join the conversation – #HyposAddUp

Tell us about your experiences with hypos. Do hypos interrupt your daily life? We’d love to hear your story on our social media pages. 

For the chance to win one of five $100 gift vouchers, tell us how your hypos add up. Use the hashtag #hyposaddup and post on your socials. Terms and conditions apply.

Previous campaigns

I was actually kicked out of a popular and quite huge venue on my sisters 21st birthday because they assumed I was drunk and I had ‘glassy eyes’ so I must have taken some other substance and be drunk and I was ‘kicked out’ .. I was literally walked out infront of HUNDREDS of people like I was a criminal but little did they know we were all rushing to the bar to get me a soft drink because I was having a hypo. How embarrassing and unfair treatment. That all came out AFTER they had removed me from the premises and I tried explaining, they didn’t believe me so then I had to put up a fight and argue my point about my health and my diabetes. I was getting all different cards that would have something health/diabetes related like my NDSS card and I went onto my emails to find an email from my endocrinologist to ‘prove’ I wasn’t drunk and this was just an unfortunate time to have a hypo. That’s so unfair and was handled very unprofessionally but I guess that’s a lack of awareness and a huge lack of understanding. If I was misbehaving then absolutely but having done nothing wrong but simply look a bit out of it but not actually asking just assuming & then going to the extreme, then that’s not okay and it needs to change. I’m not sure how because when someone thinks your drunk then they are also going to think you are making up excuses but having type 1 diabetes and having a low blood sugar while I’m out at a pub or restaurant does NOT mean I am drunk and it sucks to feel otherwise. Sometimes I wish I could turn around and just ‘I wish I was but NO’ 🤣

Maybe someone needs to make an ID card that has something like
‘I’m not drunk, just ask - I may just be having a low blood sugar’ or something like that?! Little steps in the right direction is better then none! #hyposhappen and there’s nothing I can do about it but please just ask and be ready to help if they need you!
Do you have a hypo story where someone’s thought you were drunk?

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Hypos happen. Hypos cannot be prevented. Hypos suck. There is nothing more annoying than a doctor asking me “Do you have hypos?” Of course I have hypos, do you breathe?

They’re inconvenient. They always seem to happen when I’m in the middle of something, or just drifting off to sleep.

They make me look drunk and shaky, and they’re embarrassing! I’ve hypoed on stage, in meetings, on dates, in front of my students, and in interviews. I’ve dropped objects, said countless weird things, and had a hypo argument with a bouncer who wouldn’t let me back in because he thought I was drunk. Having to ask “Could I have a few minutes?” can make me feel so vulnerable and small.

They’re tiring. Dealing with multiple hypos overnight is not a recipe for a productive or fulfilling day. Often I walk through a day after a hypo filled night like a zombie, going through the motions until I can go back home and nap.

They’re scary. I don’t feel my hypos until they get very low, and when they go below 1.5 I feel like I’m about to die. My head spins, my body feels numb, and I can’t control my shaking or sweating. I hate it.

#HyposHappen , so please don’t beat yourself up about them! You are your own pancreas every single day, so there are always going to be sneaky hypos. Join in diabetes_australia ‘s campaign this week and share your hypo story. They’re normal, they’re not an indication of “bad control”, and they’re not your fault. They happen. 💙

#thelowdown #t1d #typeonediabetes #type1diabetes #t2d #type2diabetes #typetwodiabetes #diabetes #livingwithdiabetes #lowbloodsugar #hypos #hypoglycemia #diabetes #insulin

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I may have been mid-hypo during this photo - you know that blank stare you get, and that "yeah, I'm fine" smile you give when someone asks if you're ok... 😅

I'm fortunate enough to be hypo aware at this point in time - my usual symptoms of a low are usually shaking fingers and the feeling of passing out 😟

However, I wouldn't have a clue with high sugars, as my body feels the same at 20mmol as it does at 6mmol. At first, I thought this was relatively common until I joined the DOC and realised that a lot of y'all sometimes feel terrible with high BGLs!

Any who...a hammock happened to be within close distance for my shakey legs to walk to. I popped some jelly beans and while I was staring blankly at my sister, she happened to snap this shot😅 #kodakmoment

Before this moment, I was walking along the beach thinking about Dr Frederick Banting and Charles Best on their breakthrough in treating diabetes. This week marked the 100th anniversary of this medical triumph. To think I wouldn't have made it past 19 gave me goosebumps. We are incredibly fortunate 💙


#hypoglycemia #hyposhappen #type1diabetes #insulindependent #diabetic #diabetes #typeonestrong #t1dlookslikeme #type1life #t1dlife #beyondtype1daily #diabetesawareness

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This week diabetes_australia launched this year’s Lowdown campaign #HyposHappen. Spreading the word on all things diabetes and hypos. This is Augie, mid hypo, by our pool, limp and lethargic. Our new puppy was fretting worried about what was happening, a feeling we are familiar with. I remember vividly her first hypo, we had returned from Adelaide to our regional home, it happened so fast. I put her into the bath before bed walked away for a few minutes to get her pjs ready, by the time I returned she was limp and hanging over the bath. I screamed out to my husband who helped drag her out. We treated and sat, and waited. The recovery took a while and we were petrified. We have adjusted to the symptoms and treatments over time but they are still just as scary. #hyposhappen #type1diabetes #t1dlookslikeme #t1dawareness ...

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Cardiovascular and Endurance training is key for improving daily activity without feeling excessive fatigue. helps prevent chronic disease and improves overall quality of life.

Cardiovascular and Endurance Training can be done in a lot of different ways. Whether that means intentionally parking farther away to walk more, going for a weekly jog or doing circuit training, it’s important to find what works for you, and is enjoyable for you. Consider

- Frequency. Aim for 1-3 times a week.
- Intensity. Moderate intensity is usually recommended - enough to increase heart and respiratory rate, but does not cause exhaustion or breathlessness
- Time. 150 minutes a week is suggested! Work up to it slowly if need be.
- Type. Use large muscle groups and be continuous in nature),
- Enjoyment! Have fun!

And as always, keep an eye on trends to see how each activity affects your blood sugar. Spending some time tracking bg levels can help you avoid those lows that can sometimes derail your best efforts.

Find more tips for exercise and t1d on the Beyond Barriers Workout page on our website - link in profile. Thanks to bpt.jenn for the collab!

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People experience diabetes stigma when they are blamed for having diabetes, while managing diabetes such as injecting insulin in public and when experiencing the affects and complications of diabetes like low blood sugar (Hypos).

This National Diabetes Week, let’s have the conversation about the real impact diabetes stigma can have on a person’s mental and emotional well-being.

#ndw2021 #headsupdiabetes #beatthestigma #mentalhealth #diabetesawareness #diabetes1 #diabetes2 #emotionalwellbeing #hyposhappen

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Injecting in public
Buying needles
Swapping sharps containers
Finger prick tests in public
Appearing drunk, aggressive, uncoordinated, slow and spaced out
Diabetes has an image problem.
Please don’t judge us.

#nationaldiabetesweek #stigma #blame #shame #judgement #t1dlookslikeme #hyposhappen #thisisourlife #support #awareness #connection #ndw2021

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Good thanks.

🎢 📈📉🍭📈💉📉🙄

#howsyoursunday #ihatejellybeans #diafuckingbetes #type1 #hyposhappen #t1diabetesawareness #invisibledisability #iamgreaterthanmyhighsandlows #insulinjunkie4life

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Orange you glad to see me 🍊trying to breathe through my anxiety and diabetic irritation to practice ...

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diabetes_australia wanted to know how hypos make diabetics feel...
Mine make me feel desperate for food, to feel better, to be over with it. They can happen so fast and they just happen no matter how well I maintain my diabetes. So #hyposhappen

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Let’s talk hypos. If you live with type 1 or type 2 diabetes and use insulin you’ve probably had one, but if you don’t use insulin to manage your diabetes you might be asking what is a ‘hypo’?

Hypoglycaemia, sometimes called a hypo or low, occurs when glucose levels drop too low, below 4mmol/L.

Symptoms of hypoglycaemia vary from person to person. Early signs and symptoms may include:

-Shaking, trembling or weakness




-Light headedness



-Pins and needles around mouth

-Mood change

Hypos can usually be treated with fast acting carbohydrates (jelly beans, soft drink or glucose tablets).

In some cases, if glucose levels continue to drop, it can be dangerous, and you may need someone to help you.

Share and help us spread the word. #hyposhappen

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Was awoken by a bad dream just now. Didn’t feel #hypo, but thought I should check. Yikes! This is one of my super lows. #grateful my subconscious woke me up!
Damn #diabetes. But the brownie was good!! #diabeteslife #diabetescoach #hyposhappen #dsma doc

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National Diabetes Week 2021 runs from 11 – 17 July.⁠

This year, the spotlight is on diabetes stigma and mental health. ⁠

People experience diabetes stigma when they are blamed for having diabetes, while managing diabetes such as injecting insulin in public and when they experience the affects and complications of diabetes such as low blood sugar. ⁠

This National Diabetes Week, let’s have a conversation about the real impact diabetes stigma can have on a person’s mental and emotional wellbeing. ⁠

Help raise awareness about the campaign by spreading the word: ⁠

#NDW2021 #headsupdiabetes #simplynutrition #dieitian #diabetes #diabeteseducation #HyposHappen #diabetesaustralia

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Having a hypo in public can be embarrassing for some people with diabetes. Sometimes strangers (or family or friends) can say or do things that make people feel uncomfortable or awkward.

While it may seem like someone who is having a hypo needs immediate help, sometimes the best thing you can do is let that person manage their hypo and give them some time.

As always, it’s best to be led by the person with diabetes. If you know someone with diabetes who has hypos, ask them how you can support them when they’re having a low.

Share and help us raise awareness.

If you have diabetes, you can also share your hypo story with the #HyposHappen hashtag. You’ll help us spread the word and will go into the draw to win a $250 Visa gift card

*Please note, everyone is different, and this may not be suitable for young children or older people with type 1 diabetes. It’s always best to speak with someone before assuming.

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Living life quite literally in the fast lane is professional racing driver @jack_perkins_. He talks to us about his #hypos #thelowdown2019 #diabetes #jackperkins #hyposhappen ...

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Having a hypo in public can generate unwanted opinions and judgments.

This week we are talking hypos. Stay tuned.


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Have you ever been mistaken for being drunk when you are just having a hypo?

We know this has happened to lots of people ​with diabetes.
​If this has happened to you, what was your experience?

Share and help us raise awareness around hypos. We want to kick away the stigma.

You can also share your story about having a hypo with the #HyposHappen hashtag. You’ll help us spread the word and will go into the draw to win a $250 Visa gift card.

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The Lowdown
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