adapted from mayoclinic.com
Diabetes is a serious disease. Following your diabetes treatment plan is a lifetime commitment. But your efforts are worthwhile. Careful control of your diabetes can reduce your risk of serious complications. Consider these 10 tips:
- Make a commitment to managing your diabetes. Learn all you can about your diabetes from your heath care team. Make healthy eating and physical activity part of your daily routine.
- Schedule a yearly physical and regular eye exams.
- Keep your immunizations up-to-date. High blood glucose can weaken your immune system. Get a flu shot every year, and get a tetanus booster shot every 10 years. Your doctor may recommend the pneumonia vaccine or other immunizations as well.
- Take care of your teeth and pay attention to your feet.
- Have your doctor check your kidneys.
- Keep your blood pressure and cholesterol under control.
- If you smoke or use other types of tobacco, ask your doctor to help you quit. Smoking increases your risk of various diabetes complications, including heart attack, stroke, nerve damage and kidney disease. Talk to your doctor about ways to stop smoking or to stop using other types of tobacco.
- If you drink alcohol, do so responsibly. Alcohol can cause either high or low blood sugar, depending on how much you drink and if you eat at the same time. If you choose to drink, do so only in moderation and always with a meal. Remember to include the calories from any alcohol you drink in your daily calorie count.
- Take stress seriously. If you're stressed, it's easy to abandon your usual diabetes management routine. The hormones your body may produce in response to prolonged stress may prevent insulin from working properly, which only makes matters worse. To take control, set limits. Prioritize your tasks. Learn relaxation techniques. Get plenty of sleep.
- Know your numbers: Stay in the know by keeping track of all your blood test results and your medical visits.
Remember diabetes is a serious disease, but it can be controlled.