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Archive for April 10th, 2019

Apr
10

Fasting Safely

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spoonDuring the month of April, people of various faiths will celebrate holidays that will include religious or spiritual fasting. Lenten fasts of no meat on Fridays to the week-long and a day Passover ritual of abstaining from leaven breads, are religious practices and cultural beliefs that are followed by individuals of all ages and walks of life. Among the many who will fast are those with diabetes.

Generations of people who have Type 1, Type 2, or gestational diabetes, will celebrate their faith by limiting their intake of food, water or both items for one meal, a whole day, or even for several days.

The limitation of food or fluid intake for even just one meal can have an effect on a person with diabetes, therefore, it becomes important for those with the disease to recognize the symptoms of a potential hypoglycemic episode, to know how to adjust insulin to match carbohydrate intake, to alter physical activity and to understand how to use medical technologies to help them maintain good glucose management while they practice their religious observances.
Tips for fasting safely:
  • Always speak with your doctor or health care provider or diabetes educator before starting a fast.
  • Wear diabetes medical alert jewelry - bracelet, necklace, dog tags - at all times.
  • Keep emergency contact information on you where it can be quickly found.
  • Understand that fasting can affect medication regimes – a change in eating schedules can directly affect when medications are taken.
  • Check blood glucose more frequently.
  • Do remember for many religions, there are exemptions from participating in the fast if doing so would jeopardize the health and safety of the individual.
Apr
10

A Boy and His Dog

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casey

For the past ten months, eight-year-old Casey has had a new four-legged playmate and cuddle buddy named Beamer. Beamer isn’t a small dog by any means, but Casey’s mom, Courtney, doesn’t have any complaints. After all, Beamer is more than just her son’s best friend, he is a diabetes alert dog with the mission to help Casey stay healthy.

Casey has Type 1 diabetes, a chronic illness caused by the body’s inability to produce insulin. Insulin is a hormone that the body needs to get glucose from the bloodstream into the cells of the body. People living with the disease must maintain stable blood sugar levels to avoid low (hypoglycemia) or high (hyperglycemia) blood sugar events before they become dangerous. People living with diabetes depend on insulin therapy and other treatments to manage their condition.

Raising a child with diabetes can be challenging, to say the least. However, Casey’s family sought new ways to help manage the condition. His mom reached out to a company that trains and supplies service dogs to patients in need. Despite the costly $25,000 price tag, the family set out on a mission to purchase a service dog for Casey. They began a recycling drive by collecting cans and bottles from their community. For an entire summer, Casey hand delivered the recyclables collected and cashed them in himself. As word got out about their story, supporters started making donations. In the end, as a result of the family’s hard work and the community’s backing, they were able to make the full payment.

Beamer, their Labrador Retriever, joined the family the following May, and that’s when the fun really started. The company that provided Casey with Beamer, organized a trip to Disney for patients and their service animals. This trip helped with the adjustment phase of transitioning Beamer in to the family, which can sometimes be tough, but nothing bonds a pair like sharing a seat on the tea-cup ride at one of the most beloved theme parks in the world. Beamer joined Casey and their new friends on “the best Disney trip ever.”

Companionship is only one benefit of having a diabetes alert dog. Courtney shares that Beamer’s presence can indeed be comforting during late nights when she checks Casey’s blood sugar. Beamer’s real skill lies in noticing Casey’s lows and highs, especially during times when they are not expecting his levels to be imbalanced. Such a fail-safe can be a huge blessing to the minds and hearts of parents raising children with diabetes.

As for her advice to parents considering alert dogs for their own children, Courtney says that service dogs are a wonderful addition to the family, but they can also mean a lot of extra work. It’s important to make sure the child is on board with the extra tasks that come along with their new companion and helper.

Is a diabetes alert dog the right fit for your family? Talk to your physician and your child and spend the necessary time processing the decision. Service animals aren’t for everyone, but those willing to put in the time and work required will find themselves with an amazing new member of the family.

Ordering Supplies and Equipment

A diabetes treatment plan is very important. Make sure you know how things should work. Carefully following any medication orders and instructions is vital to your plan's success. Make sure you don't run out of supplies just as you refill prescriptions so you don't run out of medication.

Here are some ways you can let us help you reorder supplies:

At Diabetes Management & Supplies, we value the part we play on your treatment plan team and realize that winning is promoting good health.