The Personal Meaning Behind the Numbers
May 22, 2014 - PART 1 of 2
When living with diabetes, there is no question about the importance of monitoring blood sugar levels. Each one of those finger pricks...
- Helps put YOU in control of diabetes.
- Immediately tells you when blood sugar values go above, are within, or go below the desired target range.
- Helps to identify factors that could be raising or dropping blood sugar levels such as food, exercise, and stress.
- Helps to identify patterns in blood sugar control.
- Helps the individual, parent and health care team to make adjustments in insulin dosage to optimize blood sugar control and well-being.
- Is needed by the health care team to fully evaluate the A1c result.
Your thoughts and feelings about monitoring blood sugar levels, and the results you receive, can really impact decisions around diabetes self-care. The language you, your family or friends, and your health care team use when discussing numbers is extremely important. Try to use and encourage others to use positive language.
Here are a few ideas:
- “My child has diabetes” rather than “My child is a diabetic.”
- “The blood sugar is in target” rather than “That’s a good blood sugar.”
- “The blood sugar is high or low” rather than “That’s a bad blood sugar.”
- “I learned something valuable” rather than “I/you made a mistake/did something wrong.”
When you carry the personal load of “the numbers,” it can have a significant impact. And, not just on you...it impacts the whole family because...
- Greater burden on one parent
- Intra-family relationship challenges
- Attention toward the child with diabetes
- Impositions on the child without diabetes
- Perception among siblings that the child with diabetes has different privileges
- Reduced interaction with extended family and friends
- Creation of a new role within the family – diabetes police
The blood sugar results are what they are, so do not get upset or down because of them. Instead, remind yourself that, by knowing about the results, you have the ability to do something about them.
Stay tuned for part 2 of this article next week! To ensure the PEP Talk newsletter lands in your inbox, become a DRInsider and subscribe today.
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SOURCE: Diabetes Research Institute Education Team