Identifying and Managing Diabetes

Theo Braddy sits behind his desk at the CILCP offices

Identifying and Managing Diabetes

Are you at risk for or living with diabetes?

Prevention or Maintenance:

  • Take medicine as prescribed by your doctor.
  • Monitor your blood sugar closely.
  • Eat well—do not skip meals.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Visit your doctor regularly.
  • Avoid tobacco.
  • Keep vaccinations up to date.
  • Take care of your teeth—visit the dentist regularly.
  • Monitor your stress levels.
Can’t find a gym to meet your needs?
CILCP’s Living Well Fitness Center has accessible exercise equipment for people with various disabilities. Learn more bout Health & Wellness »

Get informed about acute complications
(which can occur at any time)

Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA)

DKA is a “complication of diabetes that occurs when compounds called ketones build up in the bloodstream. Ketones are produced when the body breaks down fats instead of sugars, which happens when the body does not produce enough insulin to process sugar properly.”

What to Look For:
  • Nausea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Drowsiness
  • Rapid breathing
  • Increased thirst
  • Fruity-smelling breath
  • Dehydration
  • DKA typically requires hospitalization.
  • Take medicine as prescribed.
  • Monitor your blood sugar closely.
  • Maintain a balanced diet.
  • Drink lots of water.
  • Exercise regularly.


Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar Non-Ketotic Syndrome (HHNS)

HHNS is a “serious condition caused by extremely high blood sugar levels. The condition most commonly occurs in people with type 2 diabetes. It’s often triggered by illness or infection.”

What to Look For:
  • Frequent urination
  • Lethargy
  • Decreased intake of fluids
  • Take medicine as prescribed.
  • Monitor blood sugar closely.
  • Drink lots of water.


Prevent chronic complications

Chronic complications typically appear after years of elevated blood sugar.

Cardiovascular Complications
  • Control your blood sugar aggressively.
  • Treat any other factor that puts you at risk for heart disease (high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking).
  • Ask your doctor about regular stress tests.
Eye Complications
  • Visit your eye doctor at least once a year for a comprehensive exam and screening for retinopathy, cataracts, and glaucoma.
  • Control blood sugar and blood pressure.
Nerve Damage
  • Commonly found in legs and feet.
  • Control your blood sugar.
  • Keep your feet clean and moisturized.
  • Wear clean socks and shoes—avoid walking barefoot.
  • Practice daily foot self-examinations, look for evidence of skin breakdown, sores, or ulcers.
  • Take warm, not hot, showers.
  • See your doctor for any injury to the foot.
  • See your doctor regularly for foot/nail care.
Kidney Damage
    • Visit your doctor yearly for blood tests to access kidney function.
    • Visit your doctor yearly to test protein in urine.
    • Maintain control of blood sugar and blood pressure.
    • Consider taking blood pressure medications that have been found to slow the rate of progression of kidney disease.
    • Monitor protein intake.

The following information has been collected by Living Well With A Disability from various sources to provide individuals who would like to live well with their disability suggestions for preventative healthcare. While we believe this information to be accurate, we make no guarantees. All individuals should consult their personal physician regarding preventative healthcare and prior to making any health decisions.

Under no circumstances shall CILCP or its employees be liable for any direct, indirect, incidental, special, punitive, or consequential damages which may result in any way from your use of the information included as part of the Living Well With A Disability website.

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