According to the American Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about 10% of people in the U.S. have diabetes. There are two types, both of which impact the pancreas’ ability to generate enough insulin to control the body’s blood sugar. Type I and Type II diabetes are not only associated with several life-threatening health complications, the symptoms of high or low blood sugar can also mimic the signs of alcoholic intoxication. Here’s what to know about drunk driving vs driving while diabetic and how to get legal help if you were arrested for a DUI as a person with diabetes. 

Indicators of Blood Sugar Imbalances vs. Intoxicated Driving 

Initially, many of the symptoms of a blood sugar problem mimic those of intoxicated driving. For example, people who have blood sugar that is too low might act tired or slow, appearing drunk with slurred speech. They may have tremors, have difficulty maintaining their balance, and may seem confused and unable to understand the questions they’re being asked. 

Blood sugar that is too high causes symptoms similar to cannabis intoxication, such as dry mouth and extreme thirst. A person might also be nauseous or vomit, potentially confusing officers for alcohol intoxication. It may be very difficult for an officer to tell right away if a person is driving under the influence or driving with diabetes. 

How to React to a DUI Traffic Stop As a Diabetic Person 

Remember that you do not have to submit to a field sobriety test when stopped on the suspicion of drinking and driving, no matter how much the officer intimidates you. It’s typically best if you do not take a roadside sobriety test, especially if you’re diabetic and having a low or high blood sugar episode. You should provide your medical information to the officer who stopped you; if you do not carry a card or wear emergency alert jewelry stating that you are diabetic, you should strongly consider doing so. 

Remember that you also do not have to talk to the police when giving them your information. If you do, simple yes or no answers to questions like “Are you diabetic?” are best. 

Call a DUI Lawyer Now 

Without adequate legal representation, you could end up with a drunk driving charge on your permanent criminal record even if you weren’t drinking. Call J. Brian Kelley in Starkville, MS by dialing (662) 324-3476.


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