Recent research from The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continues to show that certain people are at higher risk for severe illness from coronavirus. This includes people with specific health conditions like diabetes.
Fortunately, you can do a lot to protect yourself from serious illness. It starts with sticking to your diabetes care plan.
What to Do to Stay Healthy
Keeping your blood sugar level under control is important. It’s one of the best ways to stay healthy even when you aren’t at risk for a serious illness. So check your blood sugar level often to make sure it’s in a good range.
Also keep up on other aspects of your diabetes care plan. These may include:
- Checking your feet every day
- Eating healthy foods
- Staying active
- Taking your medicine as prescribed
To help better manage your diabetes, remember to stay in touch with your care team. During this time, it may be best to forgo in-person visits with your physician. In fact, people at high risk for a serious illness from COVID-19 should stay home as much as possible.
So take advantage of our telehealth service through the AdventHealth App. You can reach your physician easily if you have questions about your diabetes. Your doctor can also give you guidance on other key diabetes concerns, such as:
- A1C testing
- Cholesterol and blood pressure testing
- Prescription refills
- Routine care, like your annual eye exam
- Steps to take if you become sick
- Ways to manage stress
How to Protect Against and Prepare for Coronavirus
As coronavirus spreads, your best defense against it is avoiding the virus altogether. To help you do that, the CDC advises the following steps for anyone who has diabetes or another condition that raises their risk for a serious illness:
- Avoid close contact with sick people
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily
- Don’t travel by air or cruise ship
- Keep up frequent hand-washing
- Stay home as much as possible
Make sure you are prepared to stay home. Have two to four weeks’ worth of insulin or other diabetes medicines on hand. Also, check that you have an ample amount of other supplies you may need, such as rubbing alcohol, glucagon and test strips.
If you need more insulin or other medicines, contact your physician via the AdventHealth App. You may be able to use mail order to have your medication delivered.
Also, make sure you have enough groceries, over-the-counter medicines for fever and other household items to last a few weeks. Then you won’t need to leave your home if you do get sick. Be sure to add simple sources of sugar like soda or hard candies to your list, in case your blood sugar level drops too low.
What to Do if You Get Sick
If you start to feel ill, reach out to your physician first via the AdventHealth App. Don’t delay, especially if you think you may have symptoms of COVID-19. These include fever, dry cough and shortness of breath.
Having any illness, including coronavirus, can affect your blood sugar level. As a result, your physician may advise that you check your blood sugar more often. You should also keep taking your insulin or diabetes medication as directed.
If your symptoms get worse or your blood sugar drops below 60 mg/dl, the CDC advises that you call 911 immediately. Severe coronavirus symptoms include:
- Bluish lips or face
- Confusion or inability to stay awake
- Ongoing chest pain or pressure
- Trouble breathing
When you call 911, tell the operator that you have diabetes. Also let the person know that you have or think you may have coronavirus.
Get the Latest Coronavirus Information
At AdventHealth, we’re here to help you manage your diabetes and overall health. Visit our Coronavirus Resource Hub for additional helpful information.