Educating the patient (and family)
Proper management of diabetes involves medication, diet and exercise, but it begins with education. Therefore, it is very important that people with diabetes and their family or friends should be educated about the causes and complications of diabetes. For the success in management it is very important that the patient complies with his doctor’s advice. But this is possible only if he is made aware of the nature of his disease.
I. Patient must know :
- Whether his diabetes is mild or severe.
- Whether his diabetes is insulin dependent or non- insulin dependent.
- Control of diet is very important. A diet sheet can be prepared according to his height, weight, nature of work, type of diabetes etc. Along with this patient should be provided the list of foods not to be taken, to be taken in moderation and food to be taken as desired.
- To take care of his general health, gums, skin, feet.
- About his complications. The better you understand your complication, the better you will be able to manage them.
- Importance of blood glucose test and urine test.
II. Patient should be trained :
- To examine his blood or urine for sugar.
- To maintain a health record (Individualized Health Management Programme) of his blood sugar, weight, blood pressure, development of symptoms.
- To measure calories required for his proper diet and make suitable selection of his menu.
- If the patient is intelligent enough and can give subcutaneous injections then he should be taught how to take it or any member of the family can also be trained.
III. Patient should be advised to :
- Keep a positive attitude.
- Do aerobic or yogic exercises. Fifteen to twenty minutes of exercises under an expert has been found to be beneficial.
- Be an active member of his health care team. He must speak up explain his feelings and ask about other treatment options.