“Knowledge is power? No. Knowledge on its own is nothing, but the application of useful knowledge, now that is powerful.” ― Rob Liano
It is more than knowing what to do. It is how to use the information you get in a practical way.
When I started writing about the "essential" things to know, I thought it would be 9 blogs/posts and then done and dusted, and on to the next topic.
But with eyes, feet, kidneys, heart, A1C, glucose numbers, blood pressure, and ultimately, you at the center, that is a lot of things to cover and "know" about.
The other aspect of the things you need to "know" and keep track of, is exactly that. It is important to keep track of your numbers.
You keeping track and not just relying on your doctor to do that for you. So, here are some forms that you can download and have to do that with.
Let's talk about your plan for dental health
Going to the dentist two times a year is what is recommended.
Between these visits, you can greatly improve both your oral health and your diabetes numbers with a targeted plan.
Brush and floss your teeth every day
If you don't like to floss, use a water pik
It is important to limit the growth of bacteria in your mouth that can lead to gingivitis
The gingivitis can lead to inflammation - which can also cause blood glucose numbers to run high
Choose healthy foods, as part of your diet
The food you eat can affect the health of your teeth and gums
It is the same story of choosing whole grains, a variety of vegetables and fruits, and low fat dairy choices - but not just for the rest of your body, but for dental health
One last item to think about
Prevention of getting the flu and pneumonia
It is recommended to get the flu and pneumonia vaccines, just to prevent you from getting sick in the first place.
Talk with your doctor about these or any other concerns you have about your diabetes management.
So to re-cap, the 9 essential things to know:
It doesn’t matter if you have had diabetes for many years or if you are newly diagnosed. There are some very important things that you need to know about your diabetes in order to do what I call “managing your diabetes and not letting it manage you.”
You are still the same person you were before you were diagnosed. That means you are a person first. You are wife, mother, or daughter. You are a father, son, or husband. Having diabetes does not change the core of you. You still have interests and hobbies that are part of who you are. You may be a quilter, you may play soccer, basketball, or golf. You may enjoy painting or drawing.
It is important to still do what you enjoy because you are more than your diabetes diagnosis.
You may have feelings relating to the fact that you have diabetes. It is natural at times to feel angry, frustrated, denial, sadness, and other feelings. It is okay to express these feelings. Talk with them with the people who are your support. Talk with them with the members of your health care team, your doctor, your dietitian, your nurse educator. This helps you move through the feelings and deal with them.
You do not have to give up your favorite foods when you have diabetes. Learn how to fit the foods that you like to eat into your meal plan. Get an appointment with a dietitian who is a diabetes educator to learn how to do this.
A1C, Cholesterol targets, pre-glucose target, post meal target, microalbuminuria. What do all of numbers mean? It is important to know about these numbers.
But it is more important to know how to use the numbers, such as the A1c, pre and post glucose values, and other numbers like what is your total cholesterol so you are in the driver’s seat and in charge of managing your diabetes.
How to treat your blood glucose value when it goes to low and what to do when the blood glucose value goes to high are important factors. Understanding what can make your blood glucose go low, and too low vital to preventing those. Knowing what may make the blood glucose go to high also needed information.
How to take care of yourself if you were to get sick.
What are the basic supplies I need to have with me? It is good to be prepared, so the basic supplies will help you for low blood glucose situations.
How to prevent complications. This information will help you know what tests you need to have done and when they should be done. It will help to take the worry about having diabetes off the table.
But it turns out that most of the "things to know" have a couple of layers to them.
I think one of the most important parts of taking care of yourself, whether you have diabetes, or are working with other goals, is that it all starts with you. You are the one person that makes change happen.
But knowing is not enough. It is necessary to do.
I would like to extend an invitation for you to schedule an appointment with me if you need a coach/diabetes educator to help you get started with moving beyond knowing and getting to the action plan.