Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a serious health condition that can be caused by insufficient insulin, not enough food, or high blood sugar levels, which all can lead to a moderate or large amounts of ketones (ADA). Ketones are produced when your cells start to use fat for energy when there isn’t enough insulin to break down glucose. When large amounts of ketones build up in the blood, they can be acidic, which can be detrimental to the body.
Type 1 diabetic patients are mainly affected by DKA and can sometimes affect type 2 diabetic patients (NHS). Regardless, if you have diabetes, it is important to be aware of causes and symptoms of DKA. Although DKA usually develops slowly, it is important to identify early symptoms as soon as possible.
Some DKA symptoms include frequent urination, high blood glucose and ketone levels, thirst or a very dry mouth, and extreme feelings of tiredness or sleepiness. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, please make sure to contact your healthcare provider.
Using a blood ketone meter can be highly effective when monitoring your ketone levels. It is also important to check your blood sugar levels simultaneously for a better understanding of your health. If your blood sugar level is more than 240 mg/dL, you should check your blood ketone levels every 4 to 6 hours.
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