What are some guidelines for sick days?
If you are ill, it effects your blood sugar, in addition to any effect that your sickness-related medications may have on your disease. It is important to know how to manage your diabetes, when you are ill.
Here are some general guidelines:
1) Take your medicine as you normally
would as long as you are eating as
you normally would. If your eating
patterns change, contact your doctor
for medication change instructions.
2) Check your blood sugar more
frequently. Since infection and some
medications used to treat infections
can increase your blood sugar, it is
important to track your sugars so
that you can adjust your
3) Check ketones, if you are a Type 1
diabetic - to see if your body is
using body fat for fuel, as
ketoacidosis is a serious condition
and will need immediate treatment.
4) Keep hydrated. Drink non-sugar, non-
alcoholic, non-caffeinated fluids to
stay hydrated and keep your blood
sugars from spiking due to
5) Be prepared: have phone numbers
ready before illness strikes. Having
a "sick day" kit that includes a
thermometer, sugar free cough
medicine/cough drops, and important
numbers is a good idea.
6) Know when to call your doctor -
a. call if your fever lasts more
than 3 days or goes about 103
b. call if your blood sugars are
consistently 50% higher than
usual, i.e. if your normal AM
sugar is 110, call if it is
repeatedly higher than 165.
c. call for symptoms of high or low
blood sugar that occur two days
in a row or three times in one
d. call if your illness is not
resolving after 5 days, with
Understanding that illness impacts your diabetes, and how to treat it, are the keys to getting through your "sick days" without a hitch.
As always, when in doubt, call your doctor for guidance.
Diabetes Frequently Asked Questions
How Do I Count Carbohydrates?
How do I follow a basic healthy diet?
Is there a difference between carbohydrates?
How often should I monitor my blood sugar?
How Do I Count Carbohydrates on my Diabetic Meal Plan?
What are the causes of high blood sugars (hyperglycemia)?
What should I know about the glycemic index?
Can I drink alcohol on my meal plan?
How can I eat out without going off my meal plan?
How does alcohol effect my diabetes?
How does having neuropathy affect my exercise?
What are some tips for the person with neuropathy who exercises?
How do I get a good blood sample for checking glucoses?
What are the benefits I can expect from regular exercise?
What role does water play in my diabetic care plan?
How do I lose weight with exercise?
How does exercise affect my blood sugars?
How can I prevent hyperglycemia?
How does exercise promote weight loss in my disease?
What is Hyperglycemia?
What is hypoglycemia?
What can cause an error in blood sugar readings with a meter?
What is hypoglycemia and what causes it?
What can cause errors in my blood sugar readings.?
How can I prevent hypoglycemia?
How do I check ketones?
What is the significance of ketones in my disease?
How does smoking effect my diabetes?
What causes type 1 diabetes?
How is hypoglycemia treated?
What causes type 2 diabetes?
Am I at risk for developing diabetes?
How do I balance my diet?
What is the hemoglobin a1c?
How do I use food exchanges in my diabetic diet?
If it's sugar-free, can I eat as much as I want?
How does insulin deficiency cause ketones?
What are ketones and how do they effect me?
What are the symptoms of hyperglycemia (high blood sugars)?
What are the symptoms of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)?
What are some guidelines for sick days?
What is a good recipe for chicken and vegetables?
How do I start an exercise program?
What is type 2 diabetes?
Can diabetes cause erectile dysfunction?
How much fat should my diet include?
How can I use the information I obtain from blood glucose monitoring?
What do I do if my blood sugar is high?
How is type 2 (non-insulin dependent) diabetes treated?
What causes my blood sugars to be high?
What is microalbumin in terms of diabetes?
What is microalbumin?
How does illness affect my blood sugar?
What is type 1 (insulin-dependent) diabetes?
What are the different types of diabetes?
What tests are used to monitor my diabetes?
What are the monitoring tests a person with diabetes needs?
What are some causes of hypoglycemia?
What are some sick day foods?
What can I eat on my sick days?
How can I prevent hypoglycemia when exercising?
How is type 1 (insulin-dependent) diabetes treated?
Are over-the-counter medications safe with my diabetes?
What are the warning signs that I may be overdoing it with my exercise?
What are some warning signs I should know about when exercising?
How do I choose an exercise thatīs right for me?
What kind of exercise is right for me?
How does exercise help my heart and my diabetes?
What are the carciovascular benefits I can expect from exercise?
What is lipodystrophy?
What is the relationship between diabetes and anemia?
How can diabetes contribute to falls?
How does my blood sugar effect my mood?
What is ketoacidosis and what causes it?
What is amyotrophy and what does it have to do with diabetes?
What is the Dawn Phenomenon?
What is the Somogyi Effect?
What is the relationship between pre-eclampsia and diabetes?
What is gastroparesis and what does it have to do with diabetes?
Explain Juvenile Diabetes.
How is Diabetes Insipidus different from other types of diabetes?
What is gestational diabetes?
What is pre-diabetes?
What is Type II Diabetes?
What is Type I diabetes?
How do I decide what type of glucometer to use?
Will my glucometer support alternate site testing?
Why should I do controls on my glucometer?
How do I maintain my glucose meter?
Is there a glucometer than can sample and test my blood in one step?
What can I do if my glucometer doesn't seem to be working right?
What kind of features can I find in a glucometer?
How do I go about getting started exercising?
How do I get started exercising?
Why should I exercise?
What is aerobic exercise?
I need more information about flexibility exercises.
What can you tell me about strength training?
How will my body respond to exercise if I am diabetic?
How do I avoid injuries when I am exercising?
What can I do to exercise, if I hate to exercise?
How does exercise impact my metabolism?
What can I do about my dry skin?
Why does my choice of socks make a difference?
How should I take care of my toenails?
Who makes the different glucometers?
is there a difference in lancets and lancing devices?
What should I see a Podiatrist
What kind of shoes should I buy, now that I have diabetes?
Why am I so sad, now that I have diabetes?
What does insulin do?
What are the different types of insulin?
I have heard about nasal spray insulin - is this available, yet?
What is the insulin pump and how does it work?
If there a way to test my blood sugar withou poking my finger?
I have trouble drawing up my insulin - is there another way?
Why should I have a Diabetes Educator?
Why do some people take insulin and oral medications for their diabetes?
What should I know about oral anti-diabetes medication?
Why is choosing the right syringe so important?
What does an Endocrinologist do?
What are some tips to manage my insulin?
What is the best way to manage my test strips?
How do I code my strips to my glucometer?
How do the diabetic testing strips work?
What is the main difference between the test strips?
Can I actually choose my testing strips?
Can you give me some tips for handling those tiny little test strips?
How do I avoid making mistakes with my test strips?
Will Medicare cover my diabetic supplies?
Will Medicare care pay for self-management training?
Will Medicare pay for screening for diabetes?
What is Medicare Health Support?
What is Medicare D and how will if effect me?
What should I consider when I choose a Part D Plan?
Will Medicare pay for my diabetic supplies?
How does Medicare D impact my Medigap coverage?
What is the Standard Medicare D Plan?
What will Medicare Part A cover?
If I have VA insurance, do I need to register for Medicare Part D?
Do I get Medicare Part D if I am already on DSHS?
What is the "Welcome to Medicare" physical exam?
When am I eligible for Medicare?
What should I look for when picking a Medicare Part D plan.
How do I compare the formularies in the Medicare Part D Plans?
Who is providing these Medicare Part D plans?
What should I look out for when choosing a Medicare Part D plan?
What are Medicare Advantage Plans?
Where can I get information about Medicare Part D?
Do carb values differ in different kinds of fruits and vegetables?
Can I balance my vegetarian and diabetic diets?
Can I eat sugar on my diabetic meal plan?
I need some help balancing the carbs in my diet. What do you suggest?
What information should I get from nutrition labels?
What are sugar-alcohols and how do they impact my diabetes?
Can Low-Calorie sweeteners be included in my diabetic diet plan?
How do I use low-calorie sweeteners in my cooking?
How can I make low-sugar jam and jellies?
Why would I want to see a Registered Dietitian if I have diabetes?
What are the benefits of keeping a food diary?
What role does protein have in the diabetic diet?
What makes for a good bedtime snack?
What are the best snack foods for me to eat?
What are the benefits of eating 6 times a day?
I need help figuring out food portions. What do you suggest?
What are the risks and benefits of using low-calorie sweeteners instead of sugar?
How does water effect my diabetes?
What is a Nutritionist and what do they do?
There are alot of new diets out there. Are they safe for me?
I s sugarfree gum okay for a brittle diabetic with no pancrease/
What do you think about Dr. Mary Vernons'treatment for type 2 diabetics where the patient cuts out almost all carbs out of their diet. Is this a permenent solution? What are the risks involed? Thank you for your time and advice.
Why is it so important for a diabetic to have a nighttime snack?