Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Diabetes Daily Care

Diabetes can lead to complications if your blood glucose is not controlled. There are activities that you can do daily to lower your risk of serious complications.

As many of one third of individuals will have a skin condition that is caused or affected by diabetes. An increased risk of skin infections is caused by dry skin and the inability of the body to fend off bacteria if your blood glucose is elevated. Follow these tips to protect your skin: keep your skin clean and dry, avoid very hot showers or baths, apply lotion to your skin avoid between your toes, treat cuts right away and see your doctor for major cuts, burns or infections.

Check your feet daily. Look for red spots, cuts, swelling or blisters. Use a mirror if you are unable to see the bottom of your feet. Seek early treatment for a sore or injury to your feet. You should have a comprehensive foot exam at least once year. Remove your shoes and socks to remind your doctor to check your feet. Trim your toenails straight across if you can see them or they are not too thick to cut. If you have a hard time trimming your toenails make an appointment with a foot doctor. Remember to avoid going barefoot.

To avoid eye problems you want to keep your blood glucose and blood pressure under control. Remember to have a diluted eye exam once a year to monitor for diabetes related eye problems. Also contact your eye doctor if you have any of the following symptoms: blurred vision, eyes hurt, you feel pressure in your eye, your eye is red and stays that way, or you see spots or floaters.

The prevalence of gum disease is increased when you have diabetes. Tips for fighting gum disease include brushing, flossing and seeing your dentist. It should take at least three minutes to brush your teeth well. Floss once a day to remove plague and bits of food between your teeth and below the gum line. Tell your dentist that you have diabetes. Also let your dentist know if you have an infection or a hard time controlling your blood glucose.

Stress can affect by blood glucose. Stress may lead to exercising less, not taking diabetic medication or not eating healthy. Stress hormones also usually increase blood glucose level. Learn different coping strategies for dealing with stress. You can also learn to relax by doing breathing exercises, relaxing your muscles, exercise, or replace bad thoughts with good ones.

The Diabetes Daily Care information is adapted from the American Diabetes Association website.

To learn more strategies about managing your diabetes consider attending Diabetic Group Classes at Wayne HealthCare. The classes are for individuals who are newly diagnosed with diabetes and those who have had diabetes for years. Group classes meet once a week for four weeks. During the classes you will learn the following: 1) facts associated with diabetes, 2) the relationship between diabetes and healthy eating, 3) the value of monitoring and using the blood glucose results, 4) the importance of exercise, 5) how diabetic medications work, and 6) ways to reduce risk of complications.

The cost of each class is $10 per class. The September group class series will be held September 9, 16, 23 and 30, 2013 from 6 pm- 8 pm. Pre-registration for the classes is required.

If these dates do not work with your schedule, the classes will be held at alternating times throughout the day. Morning classes will be held from 9 am-11 am in October and December. Afternoon classes will be held from 1pm -3 pm in November.

If you prefer to meet individually with the Certified Diabetes Educator, you can receive education regarding Diabetes Self-Management Education (DSME) and Medical Nutrition Therapy (MNT).

During DSME, you can learn more about the following: 1) using a meter and how to interpret blood glucose results, 2) how diabetic medications work on the body to improve blood glucose, 3) overview of diabetes, 4) the progression of diabetes, 5) ways to incorporate physical activity into your lifestyle to help manage diabetes, 6) reducing complications, and 7) controlling blood glucose.

During MNT education, you will learn that by planning and moderation an individualized meal plan can fit into your lifestyle. We will discuss the different nutrients your body needs to stay healthy. The educator will incorporate the diabetic diet into others diets you may be following (low cholesterol, low sodium).

For more information regarding the programs offered by Wayne HealthCare Diabetes Self Management Program please call 937-547-5750. The Diabetes Self-Management Education Program at Wayne HealthCare has received reaccreditation for their diabetes program and meets the National Standards for Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support.

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