with autonomic neuropathy—which affects the nerves that control internal
functions—can be hard to diagnose. When new symptoms develop, more
testing may be needed to diagnose the problem, identify the cause, and guide
treatment. For example, a study that measures how fast your stomach empties may
be done if symptoms like bloating, indigestion, or vomiting suggest
gastroparesis, a condition that causes the stomach to
take too long to empty.
Sometimes, living with diabetes can seem like a full-time job -- trying to
keep up with everything you need to do for proper diabetes care.
"Diabetes is a very time-consuming disease to manage well," says
Karmeen Kulkarni, MS, RD, CDE, and former president of health care and
education for the American Diabetes Association. "The medication, the food,
the physical activity -- you add life in general to that whole picture and it
ends up being quite challenging."
For some diseases, doctors can use screening
tests to look for problems before you have any symptoms. But doctors can't
test for all types of autonomic or focal neuropathy. So it is important to
report to your doctor any pain, weakness, or motor problems you have. Also
mention any changes in digestion, urination, sexual function, sweating, or
dizziness. Your doctor will also look for signs of autonomic neuropathy during
your physical exams.
The American Diabetes Association (ADA)
recommends that people who have diabetes see a doctor to examine their feet for
cracked or peeling skin, excessive or reduced sweating, blisters, calluses,
ulcers, signs of infection, bone and joint abnormalities, and walking and
balance—during each medical visit. The ADA also recommends a complete foot exam
by a doctor at least once a year.1 This examination
can detect a loss of sensation in your feet, which can lead to more serious
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Your level is currently
If the level is below 70 or you are experiencing symptoms such as shaking, sweating or difficulty thinking, you will need to raise the number immediately. A quick solution is to eat a few pieces of hard candy or 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey. Recheck your numbers again in 15 minutes to see if the number has gone up. If not, repeat the steps above or call your doctor.
People who experience hypoglycemia several times in a week should call their health care provider. It's important to monitor your levels each day so you can make sure your numbers are within the range. If you are pregnant always consult with your health care provider.
Congratulations on taking steps to manage your health.
However, it's important to continue to track your numbers so that you can make lifestyle changes if needed. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.
Your level is high if this reading was taken before eating. Aim for 70-130 before meals and less than 180 two hours after meals.
Even if your number is high, it's not too late for you to take control of your health and lower your blood sugar.
One of the first steps is to monitor your levels each day. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.
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