What Diabetics Need to Know About Flu Season


Diabetics are more susceptible to some of the more dangerous complications of both the regular seasonal flu and H1N1, also known as the swine flu. That’s why medical professionals and government agencies suggest diabetics get both types of flu vaccines. It’s also important to stay on top of blood sugar management since the illness can mask symptoms of either high or low blood sugar.

U.S. News & World Report recently published an article containing a list of six things diabetics need to know about the flu:

1 – Be careful about the over-the-counter medication you use to treat flu symptoms. Many of these medicines contain sugar, which can impact your blood glucose management.

2 – Make sure to eat regularly and drink lots of liquids. If your stomach is upset, eating soft foods and drinks may be in order. Eating less can negatively impact your blood sugar management.

3 – Don’t be a hero. Diabetics that are unable to eat or keep food down for six hours, or have trouble breathing, should call the doctor or go to the emergency room. If you have a temperature of 101 degrees or more, severe diarrhea, rapid weight loss (5 pounds or more), or blood sugars below 60 mg/dl or over 300 mg/dl, you should call your physician immediately.

4 – Check your weight regularly because losing too much weigh may be a sign of out-of-control blood sugar.

5 – Follow recommended precautions, such as covering your nose and mouth with a tissue, to reduce the spread of the illness. Wash your hands with soap and water regularly and avoid touching your nose, eyes and mouth as much as possible to prevent spreading germs. And, if you’re sick, stay home from school and work.

News provided by Diabetes News Hound.

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