What do you do if your child’s blood sugar is high? Has your doctor given you a “correction” dose or “correction factor?” A correction dose is a dose of quick-acting insulin such as Novolog, Humalog, or Apidra that is given to lower blood sugar. It begins working in approximately 10-15 minutes. Some doctors give what is called “sliding scale” where if your blood sugar falls between a range, such as 150-200 mg/dl, you take a specific dose, such as 1 unit. In the beginning, this is usually what is done the first few days or weeks of a new diagnosis.
How Do You Correct a High Blood Sugar?
Once the parents are comfortable with dosing, a correction factor is usually given. A correction factor is a number, along with a target bg goal, that is used to determine the dose. Here is how it works. If your correction factor is 50, and your target is 150, then you take your current bg minus the target, then divide by the correction factor.
Here’s an example:
BG: 300, Target 150, Correction Factor: 50. So 300 minus 150 is 150. Then 150 divided by 50 is 3. So the correction dose would be 3. The correction dose is the amount 1 unit will lower your blood sugar. So 1 unit would lower it 50 points. This is why kids with diabetes are so good at math! The insulin pumps figure the dose for you based on that scenario, and there are apps that will figure your dose also based on correction and carb ratio factors. Heres’ a link to a post on apps. More on Carb ratios here!
This example is ONLY an Example!!
Get your correction dose from your physician. Keeping blood sugar logs is helpful for your doctor and yourself when trying to determine if the dose is working. The typical way a physician or CDE determines the correction factor is to take either 1700 or 1800 and divide by the total daily dose of insulin. That’s a great starting place when determining the factor.
Need help with what to do for a low blood sugar? Here’s a post and a link to a free printable on low blood sugars.
But as in all my posts, do NOT change your dosing without consulting with your doctor!