Why does my newborn baby have low blood sugar levels?
Some babies are at risk of not having enough glucose, a type of sugar that fuels the brain. Low blood glucose levels in newborns are associated with brain injury and developmental delay. Low levels are more common in certain babies, including those who are unusually large or small at birth, premature, born to diabetic mothers, or not feeding effectively. Some may have had a difficult delivery. They may be irritable, very sleepy, or cold and have a rapid heart rate or abnormal breathing. Treatment may include the use of a sugar gel taken by mouth, establishing effective breastfeeding, or supplementing with extra milk. If those fail, glucose may be given intravenously. Once the baby’s glucose levels are stable and the baby’s issues are resolved, there is generally no need for ongoing supplementation or other treatment.