The first few days and nights after getting diabetes, when you are away from the hospital trying to figure this out in the real world, can be scary to say the least. That is why it is important to stick to the basics to build confidence in feeling safe in every day activities. After learning how to check blood glucose (BG), and for those on insulin - how much and when to take it, probably the biggest question is about food and the biggest fear is about going too low (called hypoglycemia) or too high (called hyperglycemia).
In terms of what to eat and how to count carbohydrates, our dietitians help you to learn how you can eat the foods you enjoy and not miss out on the cake at celebrations. Be sure to meet with one of them one-on-one so you get an individualized plan on the best way to approach nutritious eating for the whole family. For medication changes to keep up with life and all its activities, your provider will work with you on an ongoing basis, even in between visits so you can get the care you need.
For the sake of that safety net:
- For any BG below 50 mg/dL, or for 3 or more lows in one week, please call us at 415-514-6234.
- For highs above 300 mg/dL, please wash hands and recheck. If still above 300, check ketones. If urine ketones are moderate or large, OR blood ketones 1.5 mmol/L or above, please call us at 415-514-6234.
For non-urgent communication, you have many options. You may send your information to us electronically by MyChart (the secure electronic health record, something we can help you get set up at your next visit), via download with an email to Madison.Clinic@ucsf.edu so we know it is there, or by the old fashioned way - giving us a call at 415-514-6234.
Probably the most important thing to remember in the beginning is that it helps to not walk on this journey alone. Having the right support helps both with the physical and emotional care needed to live a healthy life with diabetes.