These goals are accomplished through:
*Blood pressure and cholesterol control
*Careful self testing of blood glucose levels
*Meal planning and weight control
*Medication or insulin use
There is no cure for diabetes. Treatment involves medicines, diet, exercise to control blood sugar and prevent symptoms.
Basic diabetes management skills will help prevent the need for emergency care. These skills include:
*How to recognize and treat low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) and high blood sugar (hyperglycemia)
*What to eat and when
*How to take insulin or oral medication
*How to test and record blood glucose
*How to test urine for ketones (type 1 diabetes only)
*How to adjust insulin or food intake when changing exercise and eating habits
*How to handle sick days
*Where to buy diabetes supplies and how to store them
After you learn the basics of diabetes care, learn how the disease can cause long-term health problems and the best ways to prevent these problems. Review and update your knowledge, because new research and imporved ways to treat diabetes are constantly being developed.
If you have diabetes, your doctor may tell you to regularly check your blood sugar levels at home. There are a number of devices available, and they use only a drop of blood. Self-monitoring tells you how well diet, medication, and exercise are working together to control your diabetes. It can help your doctor prevent complications.
The American Diabetes Association recommends keeping blood sugar levels in the range of:
* 80 - 120 mg/dL before meals
* 100 - 140 mb/dL at bedtime
Your doctor may adjust this depending on your circumstances.
You should work closely with your health care provider to learn how much fat, protein, and carbohydrates you need in your diet. A registered dietician can help you plan your dietary needs.