How can you care for yourself at home?
• Keep your blood sugar at a target level (which you set with your doctor). Eat a good diet that spreads carbohydrate throughout the day.
• Carbohydrate—the body's main source of fuel—affects blood sugar more than any other nutrient. Carbohydrate is in fruits, vegetables, milk, and yogurt. It also is in breads, cereals, vegetables such as potatoes and corn, and sugary foods such as candy and cakes.
• Aim for 30 minutes of exercise on most, preferably all, days of the week. Walking is a good choice. You also may want to do other activities, such as running, swimming, cycling, or playing tennis or team sports.
• Take your medicines exactly as prescribed. Call your doctor if you think you are having a problem with your medicine. You will get more details on the specific medicines your doctor prescribes.
• Check your blood sugar as often as your doctor recommends. It is important to keep track of any symptoms you have, such as low blood sugar, and any changes in your activities, diet, or insulin use.
• Talk to your doctor before you start taking aspirin every day. Aspirin can help certain people lower their risk of a heart attack or stroke. But taking aspirin isn't right for everyone, because it can cause serious bleeding.
• Do not smoke. If you need help quitting, talk to your doctor about stop-smoking programs and medicines. These can increase your chances of quitting for good.
• Keep your cholesterol and blood pressure at normal levels. You may need to take one or more medicines to reach your goals. Take them exactly as directed. Do not stop or change a medicine without talking to your doctor first.
When should you call for help?
Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:
You passed out (lost consciousness), or you suddenly become very sleepy or confused. (You may have very low blood sugar.)
Call your doctor now or seek immediate medical care if:
Your blood sugar is 300 mg/dL or is higher than the level your doctor has set for you.
You have symptoms of low blood sugar, such as:Sweating.
Feeling nervous, shaky, and weak.
Extreme hunger and slight nausea.
Dizziness and headache.
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor if:
You often have problems controlling your blood sugar.
You have symptoms of long-term diabetes problems, such as:New vision changes.
New pain, numbness, or tingling in your hands or feet.
Care instructions adapted under license by Alliance In Health Diabetes Control Center. This care instruction is for use with your licensed healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.