The pandemic has been tough on everyone, but more especially it has been threatening for diabetes patients. While the rest of the world should take the everyday COVID 19 advice – self-isolating, hyper-hygiene, cleaning surfaces, not sharing utensils, cups, beddings, towels, etc. – they should do that, and more.
According to the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), people with diabetes should prepare for the possibility of getting ill. Have sufficient supply of food, avoid overworking and get enough sleep. They advise that you drink a lot of water because infections can raise your glucose level, after which the need for fluids may arise. In addition, you should monitor your blood glucose level regularly and be extra attentive to avoid complications.
Keep all relevant contact details close by and have a good supply of the medication you (might) need during quarantine in case you need to “correct the situation” should your glucose level drops suddenly. They also emphasize on the importance of consulting a healthcare professional if you start having flu-like symptoms – such as high temperature, cough, difficulty in breathing, etc. Coughing phlegm is an indication of an infection and if you experience this, they advise that you seek medical treatment immediately.
The American Diabetes Association has answered frequently asked questions about Diabetes during the pandemic. Sweet Life, a community for South Africans with diabetes, provides helpful resources in times of COVID19: helplines, e-book on living with diabetes during the pandemic, emotional support via their Facebook page.
There is so much technological help available. BD and Me is a website that gives tips and provides videos on how to inject insulin. FreeStyle LibreLink is a free app that monitors glucose level and enables you to share the data with your doctor. MySugr Pro App, which keeps track of blood sugar, is also free for six months during the pandemic.
Most importantly, for additional authentic information on COVID19 as a diabetes patient, you should check out the World Health Organization (WHO) and Centre for Disease Control (CDC) websites.
There are many ways to track and regulate your glucose level during the pandemic. While it will be hard to see your doctor as regularly as you used to, you can eat healthy and control your sugar while at home.
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