Looking After Yourself
- Never stop taking your Insulin/tablets
- People with diabetes do not get any more illnesses or
infections than people without diabetes. It does however require
- Illnesses such as "flu", tonsillitis, chest infections or urine
infections often cause a raised temperature and will tend to make
your blood glucose reading go higher. This is in part due to stress
hormones like adrenaline, glucagon and cortisone being released and
they in turn make the liver release extra glucose to help fight the
- Test your blood sugars every 2 to 4 hours to monitor any major
fluctuations in control
- Higher than normal blood sugar levels will mean taking more
insulin - (normally 2 to 6 units extra on each dose) until the
illness settles down
- Check for ketones in your urine at least twice a day when you
- If you are vomiting, for more than 4 hours or have +++ of
ketones in your urine or have rapid breathing then seek emergency
- If your appetite is poor replace usual food with easily
digestible carbohydrate food or drink i.e. soup, ice cream, glucose
- Drink plenty of liquid (water, tea) to avoid dehydration.
- Take paracetamol for fever or headache
- Couch remedies are available from your local pharmacist.
For more information see:
The following links go to external websites and will open in a new
Not sure if you have had an injection?
- If you are sure you have missed your injection within 30 mins
to 2 hours of your usual time of taking then give your usual amount
minus 2 to 4 units
- If you are unsure you have taken your insulin then monitor your
BM levels. If your BM's raise higher than normal within 3-5 hours
take half the usual amount of insulin that you would have given
normally. Unless you are due another injection within the next hour
then wait and give usual amount that is due.
- It may be advisable to check for ketones if +++ then seek
- If you are on tablets to control your diabetes and are unsure
you have taken the dose forget this tablet and take your next
tablet when it is due. There is no need to double dose.
Run out of Insulin?
- Pharmacy will supply insulin but may well charge a hefty fee
without a prescription (maybe difficult to redeem this)
- Contact the Diabetes Team who will offer help
- Best of all plan ahead and don't run out
Dealing With Families
Relationships with parents and families vary. This depends on
the family, and different times of our lives. Sometimes when things
are difficult it's hard to believe that our parents were teenagers
Whilst no one is to blame for your diabetes it's not uncommon
for parents to feel responsible and guilty about you being
diagnosed with it. This can often influence how parents think and
behave. Some may become overprotective, some try to compensate and
spoil you and some can feel uncomfortable about discussing how they
really feel about this with you.
Parents often struggle to stop themselves constantly checking
your ok and asking you questions all the time. Whilst this can
leave you frustrated, annoyed and wanting to make a sharp exit,
there is a chance that something they ask could be important. If
you can it's helpful not to ignore your parent's behaviour or fob
them off with what you think they want to hear. Try to come to some
agreement about what's your responsibility, and what's theirs.
Survival tip...If the going gets tough
- Choose your allies - some people find it easier to get on with
one parent than the other.
- Talk it over - Talking to friends or other family members (with
or without diabetes) about how they would deal with their parents,
if they were in your situation can be helpful.
- Healthcare teams - if there is someone from the diabetes team
you particularly get on with it may be useful to discuss your
situation with him or her. They will be able to offer advice and
possibly help you discuss things with your parents.
- Be reasonable - if you can try to understand your parent's
point of view even if you think it's crazy, and deal with the issue
reasonably. Tell them what annoys you; explain why you want to do
what you want to do. Try breaking difficulties into specifics, it's
easier to deal with.
- Keep parents in the loop - tell them what's going on. If you
show them you are trustworthy they will treat you this way in the
future. Let them know where you're off to, who with, and what time
you will be back or agree to ring them.