Resources for Living with Diabetes

diabetes-resourcesMuch of the treatment for diabetes happens far away from our office. It happens every time you make a decision to eat a piece of fruit instead of a piece of cake, every time you check your blood sugar, and every time you take a 15-minute walk instead of turning on the television.

We know that daily living with diabetes can be a struggle, and we want to make sure you have the education and support you need. We encourage you to invest time in learning more about diabetes by making an appointment with one of our dietitians, diabetes educators, or for our group education class. Our staff will not only teach you about the ins and outs of diabetes and what is happening inside your body, they will also help you create an individualized plan to help you accomplish your health goals.

Diabetes Mellitus is a chronic disease in which your body does not make enough insulin or it is not able to use the insulin it has correctly. It results in high blood sugar levels. If left untreated, high blood sugars over time can cause diabetes complications, such as problems with eyes, kidneys, nerves and the heart.

Sick Day Management

If you have diabetes, the stress of an illness can raise your blood sugar. To manage your blood sugar levels when you are sick, follow the steps below.

What to do when you get sick:
  • Have a support system in place before you become ill! Everyone gets sick sometimes. Don't wait until you are sick to make a plan. If you think you don't feel like doing it now, you certainly won't if you're under the weather.
  • Take your medicine. Always take your insulin as prescribed unless your blood sugar is running low and you have spoken with your healthcare provider. Keep taking oral medications as prescribed unless you are vomiting or having diarrhea.
  • Drink water. Drink a lot of fluids such as water, broth and other sugar-free beverages, such as Crystal Light or Powerade Zero. Avoid alcohol and caffeinated beverages.
  • Check blood sugar and ketones. If you take insulin, test urine or blood ketones and blood sugar every 2-4 hours and write them down. Call your healthcare provider if ketones are positive.
  • Eat regularly. Eat or drink 45-60 grams of carbohydrates every 3-4 hours as small feedings, or, if you are unable to eat, drink 15 grams of carbohydrates every hour (ex: 4 oz. regular soda, ½ cup regular gelatin, 1-2 popsicles, or 4 oz regular Gatorade).
  • Get help if needed.
  • After you're well, go back to your plan. When you get better from a SHORT-TERM illness (1-2 days) return to your normal eating plan and medication dosage.
When to call your Cray Diabetes Center provider (doctor on call 24/7 at 913-588-6022):
  • Are sick longer than 1-2 days
  • Have frequent urination or pain on urination
  • Can't eat regular foods for more than one day
  • Have moderate to large urine or blood ketones
  • Have signs of infection: redness, warmth, swelling, drainage, tenderness
  • Have a cough that produces thick yellow or green secretions
  • Have dry mouth, fever, thirst, dry flushed skin, abdominal pain, rapid breathing
  • Have blood sugars consistently running > 250 mg/dl
  • Have vomiting and diarrhea lasting longer than 6 hours
  • Have any questions about how to care for yourself and control your diabetes while you are sick
  • Have questions about adjusting insulin
  • Symptoms get worse
Information to have ready for healthcare provider when you call:
  • Length of time you have been sick
  • Your temperature
  • A list of your symptoms
  • Diabetes medication (type, amount, and time of insulin)
  • Other medications you take and allergies
  • Pharmacy phone number
  • Test results (urine ketones, blood sugar)
  • Date of birth (if leaving a message)
Additional Resources: