Where do I start! First, I would like to say that diabetes is a very complex disease. It is not as simple as “eat this and everything will be fine.” So many different things have an impact on our blood sugar besides food. Just because your patient has high blood sugar, please don’t “assume” that they ate something that they shouldn’t have.
Sadly, a lot of diabetics have never had good diabetes education. I hate to say this, but the same is true for medical personnel. Just because a patient comes in and has had diabetes for awhile doesn’t mean that they know the proper things that they should be doing. I would recommend everyone dealing with diabetes read Using Insulin by John Walsh, Think Like a Pancreas by Gary Scheiner and The Diabetes Solution by Richard K. Bernstein, MD. Those three books will help you get an understanding of the proper way to treat blood sugar.
If you have a patient in front of you having blood sugar problems, do NOT treat them like those problems are their fault. I have gastroparesis and had blood sugar problems because of that. Doctors did not know how to help me and even though they knew I had gastroparesis which causes havoc with blood sugars, they blamed me. They also had me on way too much Lantus being injected once a day and that also called many roller coasters with my blood sugar. I was fortunate and found the diabetes online community (DOC) and found help, but to this day, I hesitate to discuss blood sugar with doctors because of the way I was treated.
Just because you don’t know how to help someone doesn’t mean what is happening is their fault. It means that you need to find a way to help your patient or refer them to someone else that can help them. Maybe they are doing things they should not be doing, but if they have never been taught they should not be doing something, how is that their fault?
Don’t blame your patient. Talk to them and ask questions about the things they are doing. If they are doing something wrong, then explain to them in a nice way what is wrong. Work with them and help them. Don’t point fingers! Show some compassion!
Please visit Wego Health’s National Health Blog Post Month Facebook page to read other activist’s posts.