The American Diabetes Association recently revealed that roughly 25% people above 65 have Diabetes, while 50% have pre-diabetes. Older people who have this condition are at a greater risk of developing other diseases such as hypertension, coronary heart disease, functional disability and even muscle loss.
Having diabetes might also have a great impact on an older adult’s ability to take care of themselves. The condition needs management and regular monitoring. This, however, could be a problem for seniors living on their own.
Senior home health care services in Louisville and neighboring areas in Kentucky are very helpful to families with elderly diabetic patients.
Medication and Blood Sugar Monitoring
Diabetic patients are affected by spikes and drops in their blood glucose levels. People with diabetes need to monitor their sugar levels regularly, especially patients who are on insulin. They must also be mindful of signs that their blood glucose levels are already dropping.
These signs include hunger, dizziness, sweating and confusion. When the blood sugar becomes too low, the patient could lose consciousness or die in severe cases.
The problem is, an elderly patient might no longer be able to monitor their own blood sugar. They might not even be aware that they haven’t had a meal in a while and that their sugar is already very low.
A home healthcare provider can take charge of monitoring the patient’s glucose levels to ensure that they’re within the normal range. As a trained professional, the caregiver can also administer the patient’s insulin shots or their diabetes medication according to the doctor’s prescription.
Diet and Weight Management
Diabetes is a disease that is manageable by controlling blood sugar levels. Proper nutrition and exercise are essential to keeping elderly diabetics healthy. Experts encourage small, frequent meals rather than three square meals a day.
A diet of lean protein and vegetables is also ideal. Fruits must be taken in moderation as some fruits have very high sugar content. Moderate but regular exercise is also advised. Instead of worrying about all these details about caring for an elderly diabetic, some families choose to rely on a home healthcare professional.
The medical background and training make these caregivers better equipped at handling day-to-day needs as well as health emergencies. More importantly, they provide companionship to senior patients and peace of mind to their family and loved ones.