5 Summer Tips for Your Diabetes Care
Ahhhh summer! Barbeques, warm (or maybe HOT) air, and a chance to dip your feet into a cool pool!
Type 2 diabetes management in the summer
Diabetes shouldn’t stop you from enjoying all the beautiful things summer has to offer. You often just need a little foresight on how diabetes can fit into your plans. With that, here are 5 tips for enjoying your summer and not letting diabetes get in the way.
1. Protect those tootsies
If you’re someone who enjoys going to the pool or beach, this tip is for you. Your feet are valuable body parts, but can sometimes be neglected. Consider how hot the cement and sand are around these water areas. Your feet (especially if you struggle with neuropathy and experience numbness) can easily burn on these hot surfaces. Also, broken glass or other objects may be layered into the sand or laying along the poolside. This increases your risk of injury as well. A simple pair of water shoes can help reduce many of these risks.
2. Drink up
Staying hydrated is important when you’re in a high heat environment. If you become dehydrated, your blood sugars tend to run higher. Also, you could run the risk of developing heat stroke, which has similar signs and symptoms to low blood sugars. Either situation could put you into a serious health situation. Staying hydrated, listening to your body’s needs, and taking breaks often to cool off can decrease your chances of blood sugar swings or missing signs and symptoms of blood sugar problems.
3. Take it easy on the alcohol
It’s hard to imagine a good barbeque or backyard get-together without a beer or two. Drinking is often a very social part of our work and how we connect with others. Drinks with carbs can raise your blood sugars, whereas liquor without carbs can make it difficult for you to recover from a low blood sugar. A good rule of thumb is sticking to 1-2 drinks and having something to eat with your drinks.
4. Don’t mix supplies and heat
Most diabetes supplies need to be stored at room temperature or in a refrigerated environment. Heat, light, and moisture can destroy the accuracy of your test strips. Heat can make certain medications less powerful. Whether your camping or running errands, have a plan to protect your glucometer and medications from these things. Using coolers or taking these items with you into the store are a few options.
5. Stay clean and dry
Heat and moisture can also be tough on your skin. This is especially true if you struggle with higher blood sugars. Yeast infections can develop under the folds of your skin and in between your toes. It’s important to keep these areas clean and dry. Creams, powders, and breathable materials that wick away moisture can also help. Finally, working with your medical team to get your blood sugars in check can make a big difference in reducing this risk.
And there you have it. The 5 tips to keep your diabetes in check while you frolic in the sun. So, go outside and enjoy your summer!
Do you live with any sleep disorders (eg. insomnia, sleep apnea, RLS) in addition to your diabetes?