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Type 1 Diabetes: Recently Diagnosed - Prevention

Wear medical identification

Wear medical identification at all times. If you have an accident or you are taken to a hospital, this identification lets people know that you have diabetes so that they can care for you appropriately. You can buy medical identification in bracelets, necklaces, or other forms of jewelry at your local pharmacy.

Prevent high and low blood sugar emergencies

Blood sugar usually rises above a target range slowly, but it can lead to a life-threatening emergency unless it is treated promptly. Your blood sugar is likely to rise when you are sick. For more information, see guidelines for when you are sick.

A hyperosmolar state is life-threatening and can occur when your blood sugar level is very high and you get dehydrated. Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a life-threatening blood chemical (electrolyte) imbalance that develops in a person with diabetes when the cells do not get the sugar (glucose) they need for energy.

Diabetes: Preventing High Blood Sugar Emergencies
Diabetes in Children: Preventing High Blood Sugar

Low blood sugar or hypoglycemia occurs when the level of sugar (glucose) in your blood has dropped below what your body needs to function normally. When your blood sugar level drops below 70 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL), you will likely have symptoms of low blood sugar which can develop quickly. Low blood sugar can be especially dangerous if you drive. Do not drive if your blood sugar level is below 70 mg/dL. Take precautions when you are driving, and be prepared to stop and treat low blood sugar.

Diabetes: Dealing With Low Blood Sugar From Insulin
Diabetes in Children: Preventing Low Blood Sugar

Having a routine (when you eat, exercise, take your insulin, and check your blood sugar at about the same time every day) can also help prevent high and low blood sugar emergencies. When you have a routine, your blood sugar levels may be more predictable. A routine will also help you to remember to check your blood sugar and give yourself your insulin injections.

Preventing soreness and infection at injection sites

You can prevent soreness and infection at your injection sites by:

  • Varying the place where you give your injections. See the picture of injection sites .
  • Washing your hands before preparing and giving an injection.
  • Cleaning the injection area with a piece of cotton dipped in alcohol or with a commercial alcohol wipe.
  • Not using needles that are bent or have been reused several times.
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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 05, 2010
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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If the level is below 70 and 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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