What Happens When You Skip Your Diabetes Medication?

With the rate of diabetics in America increasing annually, the demand for prescribed oral medication grows each year because of its ability to make a difference in the experience that one has with their condition.

If you’ve been dealing with imbalances in your insulin levels and your body’s production of associated hormones, you’ve likely also been taking oral medicines to keep everything under control. Thanks to how modern medicines are formulated, you may feel like you won’t need to take your diabetes medication anymore because of how healthy you feel after. However, the problem with this line of thinking is that it blinds you from the obvious truth that you shouldn’t stop taking your meds.

The main problem that diabetes medication keeps under control

They may not seem like much compared to other drastic methods like injections or similar treatments, but diabetes medication is just as—if not more—vital when it comes to curtailing the risks associated with the condition.

Typically, this medication’s main purpose is to keep your body’s blood sugar (or glucose) at healthy levels. However, many people with diabetes don’t realize the importance of diabetes medication beyond its rudimentary purpose and end up putting their bodies in danger once they become complacent with keeping track of their dosages.

Beyond maintaining optimal glucose levels, diabetes medication is especially important because it helps curtail and control many of the associated problems that are rather inconspicuous. Considering that associated conditions like kidney disease, nerve damage, and strokes take time to develop and often worsen with carelessness regarding medication, it’s critical to ensure that you don’t miss out on your meds.

What medical conditions are you at risk of when you forgo your medicine?

Currently, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) urges struggling diabetics to take their medication much more seriously because of the additional obstacles and debilitating conditions that can come about. If you’re wondering why it pays to stay on top of your oral medication (alongside an appropriate diet plan), here are some of the many conditions that can arise from carelessness:

1. Nerve Damage

One key fact that anyone struggling with diabetes should know about is that high blood sugar can damage one’s nerves, causing other problems to develop in the process.

As the name suggests, this type of damage can cause problems with how your nerves send messages to the other parts of the body. In the case of diabetics who fail to take their medicine as prescribed, a more debilitating form of damage known as diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN) affects up to 50% or more of adults with diabetes. Suppose you fail to take your medication to manage your glucose imbalances. In that case, you’ll end up experiencing different symptoms, such as numbness or tingling in the hands, legs or feet, nausea, dizziness and sexual dysfunction.

2. Disease of the heart and blood vessels

Whenever diabetic medication isn’t taken properly, the body’s system begins to react and cause a bout of hyperglycemia (too much sugar in the blood), a problem that eventually causes damage to the heart and blood vessels. Unfortunately, this same type of damage extends over to an even greater problem of abnormal cholesterol levels which are prevalent among 60 to 70 percent of American diabetics!

3. Kidney damage

Another form of damage that can occur whenever diabetes medicine isn’t taken as prescribed is aggravated kidney damage.

Considering that diabetes mainly affects the kidneys, having the right type of medication goes a long way for preventing abnormal blood sugar levels from gravely affecting these organs. However, failing to take medicine on time and at the proper dosage can lead to an opposite effect where higher sugar levels can damage the kidneys and affect the way they filter out toxins—a problem that results in kidney failure!


Although it may not seem like much at first, the seemingly-simple mistake of failing to take your diabetes medication as prescribed is something that can significantly compromise your overall health. Suppose you fail to adhere to your doctor’s orders or simply ignore the need to keep up with your maintenance medication-related needs. In that case, you’ll likely end up experiencing the problems above—so take this as a sign to stay committed!

Through our medication management app, you won’t ever have to worry about missing a dose on a prescription for your conditions or those of your patients’. Check out our app today to start taking your meds on time in the most convenient and accessible way possible!

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