Managing diabetes can be complicated even when your aging relative is otherwise well. But, when they are ill, the disease is even tougher to keep under control. Illness places stress on the body and causes it to release certain hormones to fight the illness. Unfortunately, the hormones can make blood sugar levels go up and they can make insulin less effective. That can make it more difficult for the older adult to keep their blood sugar levels steady and within their goal range. Managing the disease during illness requires a bit more diligence and some extra work.
Below are 5 things that can help your loved one to manage diabetes during an illness.
#1 Have a Plan in Place
Before the senior even gets sick, it’s a good idea to have a written plan for what to do during an illness. One of the things to include in the plan is details about when it is necessary to call the doctor. This can help family caregivers and home health care providers to identify when medical care is needed. In addition, write down how often the person should check their blood sugar, the medicines they should use, and what to eat. A home health care provider can help the older adult to follow the plan, reminding them to check their blood sugar and take medicines. They can also let family caregivers know if the senior shows signs of needing to see a doctor.
#2 Continue to Take Medications
Even if the senior is vomiting, they should continue to use their regular medicines. During illness, medication dosages may need to be altered. Talk to a doctor about how to do that.
#3 Make Smart Food Choices
When a diabetic isn’t able to eat as much because of an illness, it can make their blood sugar levels get too low. It can help to eat foods that are high in carbohydrates. The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases recommends eating the following foods:
- Popsicles or sherbet.
- Gelatin (not the sugar-free kind).
- Soda (also not sugar-free).
- Saltine crackers.
Home health care providers can prepare meals and snacks that are easier for the older adult to digest and will help them to keep their blood sugar levels from falling.
#4 Test Blood Sugar More Often
It’s a good idea to test blood sugar more often than normal during an illness. Write down the test results and report them to the doctor if you believe the older adult needs medical attention. A home health care provider can bring the older adult their testing supplies and remind them to test often.
#5 Avoid Sugary Medicines
Some kinds of over-the-counter medicines contain excess sugar to improve the flavor. Look for medicines that are diabetes-friendly. A doctor or pharmacist can make recommendations.
If you or an aging loved one are in need of Home Health Care Services in Huntington NY or the surrounding areas, contact the caring professionals at Star Multi Care Services today at (631)956-8835. We are the Right Choice for Home Health Care Services!
From 1978 to 1986, Sternbach was associated with Automated Data Processing, Inc. (“ADP”)–a provider of information services, where he held several marketing positions before becoming the Director of Sales.
1999-2008 Sternbach was an active participant on the Board of Directors for Proginet–a computer software company based in Garden City, New York. He also served on the Board of Trustees of the Long Island Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society from 1996-2002.
In 1996, Stephen Sternbach was named “Entrepreneur of the Year” by Ernst & Young, Paine Webber and NASDAQ. Sternbach was also named in Crain’s New York Business Article, “40 Under 40” Successful Business Executives/Future Business Leaders in 1995. While maintaining a diversity of business and personal interests, Sternbach concentrated most of his efforts over the past 28 years towards continuously improving the quality of services delivered by the Star Multi Care Services’ family of companies.
Stephen Sternbach holds a Master of Public Administration from Syracuse University – Maxwell School of Public Administration and a Bachelor of Arts in Industrial Relations and Personnel Administration from Ithaca College.