Understanding Diabetes | Health under the spotlight
Welcome to the first of our ‘Health Under The Spotlight’ series. We’ll be dissecting some special conditions and explaining how, as a care provider, we would help to support our residents.
Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes, also known as hyperglycaemia. If you have type 2 diabetes, your blood sugar gets too high. Insulin, which is made in the pancreas, helps transport sugar to your cells. But if you have type 2 diabetes, your body makes too little insulin or doesn’t use it properly which can result in too much sugar in your blood and not enough in your cells.
Anyone can get type 2 diabetes, but there are certain people who are more likely to develop this condition.
The symptoms of type 2 diabetes typically develop over the course of serval years. The symptoms range in severity and can also be mild you may not notice:
- Blurred vision
- Tingling or numbness in hands or feet
- Unexplained weight loss
- Slow-healing wounds
- Increased thirst or hunger
- Increased Urination
Consult your doctor if you notice any of these signs or symptoms.
How we support you:
All of our residents within Atkinsons homes are supported with their diabetes. We create and implement an individually tailored care plan to ensure it is well managed/improved. This includes (but not limited to) a well-maintained diet plan, ensuring regular checks and tests as prescribed by the NHS, exercise routine as well as goals/targets to work towards.
Check your blood sugar levels:
High blood sugar levels damage your blood vessels and make you more at risk of serious diabetes complications. We routinely take tests to ensure your levels stay consistent and monitored and in-between tests, we keep a close eye on your levels by doing a ‘finger-prick test’ or using a ‘flash glucose monitor’ not everyone with diabetes will need to do this, but people who are on insulin and certain types of medication will need to.
Checking your blood pressure:
High blood pressure increases your risk of diabetes complications like heart problems, kidney disease and serious eye damage. This is because the blood pressure puts a strain on your blood vessels and heart, so they can’t work properly. It’s important to know that you might still feel healthy when you have high blood pressure. Our care team will measure your blood pressure and set a personal target for you.
Maintaining cholesterol levels:
Good control of your blood sugars, blood pressure and cholesterol is critical to reducing your risk of serious complications. Cholesterol is a type of fat (or lipids) in the blood. Too much bad cholesterol can block blood vessels and stop blood getting to important organs like your heart. Our care team will arrange regular checks. We will support changes in your lifestyle which can make an overall improvement in you health, including your diabetes condition by:
Taking control of your diet
Meal Planning personalised to your diabetes condition – we offer a choice of diabetes ‘sugar free’ puddings and snacks. Our Care home managers will tailor care plans around individual requirements to ensure quality care and support by working closely with our chefs we will check salt and fat amounts in your meal times which will help keep your cholesterol and blood pressure levels in check. We will arrange regular check up’s with our dietitian who will be able to give you and our staff further dietary advice.
Looking after your eyes
You’re more at risk of serious eye damage because of your diabetes. High blood sugar levels damage the blood vessels that help the eye work properly. But while diabetes is a leading cause of preventable sight loss – you can prevent it. Our care team will arrange for regular eye screening appointments which can either be provided within our homes and we will arrange for an opticians to visit the home or to make regular appointments.
Checking feet & legs
Having diabetes means you’re much more at risk of developing serious problems with your feet. If these aren’t treated properly, it could lead to amputation. All of our care homes have a regular appointment with a certified chiropodist who carries out foot checks and nails trimming in the comfort of your own room.
Talking about how you feel
Being diagnosed with diabetes and living with a long-term condition can be difficult. All of our care teams are on hand to offer care and support and we can arrange for psychological support also from our community specialist nurse who can rest your mind with any questions or guidance you may need.
Get in touch
Got questions? We’d love to hear from you.
Tel: 01252 871751