But here’s the good news: you don’t have to struggle. The APMA (American Podiatric Medical Association) has broken down your diabetic action plan into four easy steps.
Take a deep breath, read on and learn how you can easily take control of your health!
Step 1: Learn more. Find out as much as you can about your type of diabetes, using your doctor, others living with the illness and research as your resources. Get your family involved in the education and start to set up your management team (a team of medical professionals which should include your main doctor as well as an endocrinologist, opthamologist, dentist, podiatrist, pharmacist and vascular specialist.)
Step 2: Explore your ABCs. The A1C test--measuring your average sugar level over the past three months—should be done twice a year. You should shoot for a score below 7. Your Blood pressure should be checked regularly and should ideally stay around 120/80 as high blood pressure can increase circulation problems. Your Cholesterol should be checked at least once a year; HDL should be above 40 and LDL below 100.
Step 3: Enter management mode. Stick to a diabetic meal plan. Get active, ideally for 30-60 minutes every day. Quit smoking. Take your meds exactly as prescribed. Brush and floss every day. Monitor your eyesight and report any changes to your doctor. Wash, dry and check your feet every day. Report changes to your podiatrist.
Step 4: Remember your schedules. Blood glucose and feet are checked daily. Each member of your management team should be visited twice a year. Once a year, get a cholesterol test, triglyceride test, comprehensive foot and dental exams, dilated eye exam, urine and blood tests and a flu and pneumonia shot.
As long as you stay on top of your health, you are unlikely to experience foot-related diabetes side effects like loss of sensation and ulcers. To make Dr. Andrew Schneider part of your diabetic management team, schedule an appointment today!