DISCLAIMER: Do not take ANYTHING you read here as medical advice or copy anything you read on The Level Scoop or other websites. You must speak with your healthcare team / diabetes specialist, as they are the only ones qualified to help you make changes.
Phew, glad we got that part out of the way.
This is a HALF day because . . .
I realised how complex diabetes decisions are when you have to write them down.
Even after furious editing - diabetes calculations are a daily mind marathon at best.
For those who don’t have diabetes, it must be really tough to understand. I hope this provides a peek inside our busy minds. And if you do have diabetes . . . Hello, friend! Here’s what goes on in my world.
05:30: Awake and out of bed
Diabetes Stuff: Dexcom says my blood sugars are high at 9mmol/l. Not surprising given night time events. A cat fight woke me up at 1am and I wasn’t sure if our cat was in / out in my dazed state. I found him fast asleep with his head up his . . . well you know how cats sleep.
I banged my elbow so hard on the door frame in my panic that I couldn’t get back to sleep for hours.
Why the high levels? Hello, stress!
Cortisol / adrenaline and a bunch of other fun hormones release in response to stress and our livers pump a surge of sweet stuff to fuel fight / flight. This raises blood sugar levels.
Not enough sleep is also a major stress. Double whammy.
I did a blood test to confirm the Dexcom result. Yes, it agreed. Bolused a correction dose and a bit for the Dawn Phenomenon (one for another post) to bring my levels down.
05:45: Take the pups outside for toilet time
Get Barry’s breakfast and lunch prepped & packed. Shower. And off to the train station.
Diabetes stuff: Blood tests are a legal requirement of the DVLA (CGM results are not acceptable). If I’m hypo (4 is the floor), I need to treat the hypo and wait 45 minutes after my last in range test result before driving.
MUST always have glucose tablets / hypo rescue remedies in the car door. Also a legal requirement.
I already blood tested myself within the last 2 hours so we’re good to go.
06:35 Back home. I HAVE to go back to bed for a few hours!
When I worked full-time, this was the biggest killer for me. I regularly slept badly, but I had to keep going. Most PWD’s are doing this every day, so I count myself very lucky I don’t have to right now. See below for why this is such a huge problem . . .
Diabetes stuff: Lack of sleep spikes stress hormones. So without enough sleep, all the pre-programmed ratios in my insulin pump will be wrong. When I had to carry on, I would eat less carbs and/or inject more insulin all day and sometimes set a temporary basal rate to cover the extra stress on my system.
Stress is one of THE hardest things to account for with diabetes. The rise in blood sugars is very much dependent on just how stressed you are. So, we could be talking anything from the tiniest insulin increase up to 100’s of percent.
If you know someone with diabetes - it may be best NOT to choose them as your sounding board if you happened to have a bad night’s sleep. You may find their empathy chip has gone on a permanent vacation. Eyes (or heads) may roll.
Part 2 to follow later this week . . .