Diabetes Education At Your Doctor's Office

If you are a newly diagnosed diabetes patient, then you will need to learn everything you can about treatment options, lifestyle modifications, and potential complications. Your doctor and the nurses at the medical practice provide diabetes education to all diabetic patients so that they know how to manage their blood glucose levels and which signs and symptoms may warrant medical attention. Here are some things your diabetes educator may discuss with you so that you can better manage your condition.

Lifestyle Choices

Because your lifestyle choices have such an important impact on your blood glucose levels, your doctor and in-office diabetes educators will talk to you about which lifestyle choices you should adopt and which ones you should let go of. For example, you will learn why weight management and exercise is so important in keeping blood sugar levels stable and why managing your stress levels can help slow the progression of diabetes.

Medication Side Effects

Diabetes medications can cause side effects that your doctor will discuss with you. For example, insulin may cause irritation, redness, and swelling of your skin at the injection site. It may also cause shaking, excessive hunger, dizziness, numbness or tingling sensations, anxiety, a fast heart rate, and increased sweating.

While these side effects may be temporary and may resolve once you are used to taking insulin, they may persist. If they do, see your doctor because you may need to have your dose adjusted. Side effects of non-insulin diabetes medications may include loss of appetite, weight loss, diarrhea, bloating, excess gas, and nausea.

In addition, certain medications used in the management of high blood glucose levels may make your kidneys work harder and, in some cases, raise your risk for renal failure. Your doctor will advise you to make an appointment if you experience blood in your urine, swelling of your appendages, an increase or decrease in urinary output, lethargy, or pain in the flank area of your back. These symptoms may indicate kidney problems and will need to be addressed quickly.

If you have diabetes, take advantage of any education sessions at the medical practice you visit. When you are a well-informed patient, you will be able to manage your illness better. This means that you may be less likely to develop disease progression and diabetes-related complications, such as poor vision, kidney problems, circulatory disorders, heart attack, or stroke. Find a medical practice that can help you with your health to make the most informed choices.