Your baby’s sugar levels are regulated by their hormones, the key hormone being insulin. Insulin helps the body to store sugar (blood glucose) and release it when it is needed.
Your baby’s blood sugar levels go down in the first few hours after birth, which is completely normal (Unicef 2013).
Your baby gets their glucose from milk. When your baby has just had a feed, their sugar levels will go up. As the next feed draws closer, their sugar levels will start to dip. Keeping the right level of sugar in the blood is a delicate balancing act. Most healthy babies can cope easily with these normal ups and downs in blood sugar level. If you feed your baby whenever they want, they will take the milk they need to ensure their sugar levels remain balanced.
However, some babies are susceptible to hypoglycaemia if they;
- Are born to mums who have diabetes
- Were premature or very small
- Were large for their gestational age
- Had breathing difficulties at birth
- Were born under significant stress
- Have suffered excessive coldness, or hypothermia
- Have an infection
Low blood sugar in newborns is usually very easily treated, however if it goes undiagnosed and/or untreated for too long, it could be harmful to your baby’s health and there is a chance of long-term injury. Some of these injuries include;
- Cerebral Palsy
- Learning disabilities/ development disabilities
- Problems with sight
The most common signs of hypoglycaemia in newborn babies include;
- Not interested in feeding
- Lack of movement and energy (lethargy)
- Jittery or irritable
- Low body temperature (hypothermia)
- Stopping breathing
- Blue tint to skin and lips
- Floppy muscles (poor tone)
At Ison Harrison, we have a team of expert clinical negligence solicitors. If your baby has sustained an injury resulting from undiagnosed hypoglycaemia, please call us on 0113 284 5000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.