Happy New Year!!!! As the new year gets underway, now is the best time to start with new goals and aspirations to get healthy and whole. Evaluating what is needed to get on and stay on the right track is essential when one makes the decision to take control of their health. Striving for good diabetes management is no exception and will require a great deal of effort, time and patience, with an outcome that leaves one feeling confident, strong and healthier when managing such a unpredictable disease. To get off to a fresh and new start, here a few suggestions to lend assistance:
1. Make a decision to see your physician at the specified times of the year to make sure all is well.
2. Know the ABCs of good diabetes management, A1C, Blood Pressure, and Cholesterol.
3. Utilize your healthcare team such as the certified diabetes educator, dietitian, and many others. Remember they are all here to assist in good management of diabetes.
4. Get regular exercise because it helps with management of blood sugars and overall health.
5. Remember to minimize the amount of processed and fast foods and eat as many fresh fruits and veggies as possible.
6. Drink plenty of water to keep you hydrated. Stay away from the sweetened drinks unless they are sugar-free.
7. Now is a good time to make sure that all of your diabetes supplies are not about to expire. Make sure to check the that the date and time on the meter is correct, perform a control test to ensure that the meter is functioning properly, and get into the habit of only using the lancets and syringes once.
8. Join a support group to connect with other diabetics if needed. Also do not ignore signs and symptoms of depression which could lead to neglect of diabetes care. Seeking professional help does not in any way imply that your are crazy. It simply means you are in need of some coping exercises to help you.
9. If your supplies are costing too much then shop around for better options instead of sacrificing what is needed for good diabetes management.
10. Continue to ask as many questions as possible regarding diabetes management and consider taking a refresher course to assist with getting back on track.
Helen A. Jenkins RN, CDE