If you’ve recently become a caregiver to a senior with diabetes, one of your new responsibilities is learning more about the disease so that you can assist the person to the best of your abilities. There is a lot to know about diabetes. As you educate yourself, it can be helpful to spend time talking to the senior’s doctor and other people on their diabetes care team. It can also be useful to read all you can about the disease. To get you started, here are 5 quick facts about diabetes.
#1: Diabetes is Extremely Common
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 30 million people in the United States have diabetes. This means that your aging relative isn’t alone in what they are going through. It also means that you’re not the only caregiver dealing with diabetes. One way to connect with other caregivers for seniors with diabetes is to join a caregiver support group. You can find in-person and online groups by searching the Internet.
#2: Uncontrolled Diabetes is Dangerous
As a caregiver, you’re performing an important role by helping your loved one to control their diabetes. When diabetes isn’t managed well, it can lead to serious complications, like:
- Eye problems.
- Heart disease.
- Kidney damage.
- Nerve damage.
#3: There are Different Kinds of Diabetes
Caregivers should find out which kind of diabetes their aging relative has. They may have either type 1 or type 2 diabetes. The bodies of people with type 1 diabetes don’t make any insulin. People with type 2 diabetes either don’t make enough insulin or cannot use the insulin their body makes. Type 2 is the most common kind of diabetes.
#4: Eating with Diabetes Isn’t Much Different than Healthy Eating for Everyone Else
One of the keys to managing diabetes is eating a healthy diet. While it’s true that caregivers for seniors with diabetes have to be a little more careful when planning meals, there isn’t much difference between planning a healthy meal for a diabetic or for other seniors. In general, a diabetic meal plan simply means serving the healthiest foods possible while also eating at regular intervals. If you’re unsure what foods to serve, ask the doctor to refer you to a dietician for help.
#5: Exercise Helps Control Blood Sugar
Exercise works to control blood sugar levels in two ways:
- Exercising makes the body more sensitive to insulin so that it can use it more efficiently.
- The muscle contractions that occur during exercise make cells able to use glucose even without insulin.
For caregivers in Southern NJ, and the surrounding areas, call and talk to us at Home to Stay Healthcare Solutions (856) 321-1500.
Home to Stay Senior Care Solutions is owned and operated by the Dubler and Skole Families and was started because of experiences they had with their own Families. In one situation Mom was living alone and had a fall. It was not until this fall that the family realized they were unprepared.
When it was time for their Mom to come home, she needed companion and personal care to assist her and prevent another accident. Like most people in this situation, they were confused and did not know where to go for help. It was this life-changing experience that lead to starting a home care company that is focused on enabling those who wish to stay at home and age in place.