Spring cleaning is an unofficial undertaking magically triggered by warmer weather and sunnier days. But cluttered closets and messy garages aren’t the only things that could use our attention. It’s also an excellent time to re-evaluate your health. If you have diabetes, a spring cleaning can be beneficial for many reasons. The most important being the assurance you’re doing everything possible to stay healthy.
A diabetes management plan encompasses everything a person does in a day to maintain healthy glucose levels and avoid complications. By applying the same methodology from the concept of spring cleaning, you and your doctor can take a closer look at all or part of your current plan. Below are a few examples of what you can include in your spring cleaning checklist for diabetes:
• Revise any outdated information such as dosage and instructions of current medications.
• Evaluate if there are any technological advances or new treatments on the market that can help you to manage your diabetes easier.
• Talk with your doctor about any challenges so they can recommend any alternatives and provide additional support options.
Bad habits play a significant factor in managing diabetes effectively. For example, smoking and excessive alcohol consumption increase your risk for type 2 diabetes. For those who have diabetes, smoking and excessive alcohol consumption make it harder to manage blood glucose levels and raise the risk of developing complications such as:
• Heart disease
• Kidney disease
• Poor blood flow in the legs and feet can lead to infections, ulcers, and possible amputation
• Retinopathy (an eye disease that can cause blindness)
• Peripheral neuropathy (damage to the nerves in the arms and legs that cause numbness, pain, weakness, and poor coordination)
April kicks off two awareness initiatives that remind us we owe it to ourselves to stop doing the bad habits that prevent us from living a healthier life. Take Down Tobacco is a year-round initiative that commences with a National Day of Action on April 1st. Their focus is to decrease the toll of tobacco use by making the public aware of the smoking-related dangers and promoting stricter tobacco policies. Visit smokefree.gov to take advantage of the free resources and tools to help you quit.
April is also Alcohol Awareness Month which provides a focused opportunity across America to increase awareness and understanding of alcoholism, its causes, effective treatment, and recovery. It is an opportunity to decrease stigma and misunderstandings to make resources for seeking help more readily available to those living with this disease. The National Institutes of Health website contains tips for knowing when to get help for alcohol abuse, treatment options, and more.
April is full of inspiration, whether you’re spring cleaning or kicking bad habits for better diabetes management. Rainier Clinical Research Center is looking for participants to join enrolling research studies evaluating potential new therapies and weight loss options for individuals with type 2 diabetes. Find out if you qualify today! Call us toll-free at (888) 478-8343 or visit our current studies webpage.
A common diabetes complication is a type of nerve damage called Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy (DPN). Read more on the symptoms and management of DPN.