What Is It Like to Live With Diabetes?

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Living with diabetes requires developing a dedicated relationship with a doctor, learning how to monitor blood sugar, spending time with a registered dietitian and incorporating physical activity into a daily routine. Utilize a large support system of family and health care providers to manage diabetes with advice from a family nurse practitioner in this free video on diabetes.

Part of the Video Series: Diabetes Symptoms & Treatments
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Video Transcript

Hello, you may have wondered, how is it to live with diabetes? My name is Sonya Wade. I'm an Assistant Professor, and Family Nurse Practitioner at Vanderbilt University School of Nursing, and if you've ever wondered how it is to live with diabetes, I would like to try to give you some information, to help you know how to better do that. The first thing that you would need to do, is be dedicated to formulating a partnership between yourself and your health care provider, with both of you, with the goal of treating your diabetes, as best as it can be treated, and managing, and keeping your blood sugars under control. You will experience less complications, you will have a better quality of life, and all around, you will just feel better. Living with diabetes, you would need to know that your self management education is very important. Your self management education would include teaching sessions, that you would need to be provided with, where you would learn how to monitor your blood sugar, because monitoring your blood sugar everyday, is very important. Also, it would be important for you to spend time with a registered dietitian, so that if you have questions related to your meal planning, or your nutrition, the dietitian is a very rich resource, that you should utilize. Also, as you're living with diabetes, plan to be healthy. Incorporating physical activity into your daily routine, as well as knowing what medications you're on, how best to use those medications, formulating a sick plan, before you might need a sick plan, so you will know exactly what to do, and also remembering that as you continue to live life to its fullest, to prevent infections that can occur in diabetes, it's very important for you to have your yearly influenza vaccine, and ask your health care provider if you have had your pneumococcal vaccine, because those particular diseases cause a lot of diabetics to have to have hospital stays, and prevention is always a better choice. The other thing that you should remember, as you're living with diabetes, is that you can utilize a large support system, between your family, and your health care team, to make your days better days, everyday of your life. Those other specialists that might be a part of your health care team, might be your eye doctor, your foot doctor, or your dentist. You would need to see them regularly, and your primary care health provider will help you, in making those appointments, and just remember, get up and move.

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