Diabetics need to be very informed about what may or may not adversely affect their health. Spikes in blood sugar can be very dangerous, and sometimes things that may be out of our control can put you in a risky situation. Extreme heat can, in fact, affect your blood sugar control! During the summer, temperatures can reach an all-time high. Coupled with outdoor activities and tropical vacations, summer is usually a hard time of the year for diabetics. More people end up in the emergency room and are hospitalized because of illness due to heat strokes.
High temperatures can have a negative effect on other diabetic management supplies, such as test strips. Insulin can be damaged by the extreme temperatures, making them ineffective and unusable.
Here are a few precautions you should take to help you prevent summer from putting a damper on your plans:
Staying properly hydrated can cool down your body systems to prevent heat strokes. In the heat, increased sweating can quickly cause dehydration. When you are dehydrated, the concentration of blood sugar heightens as you have less blood flow in your kidneys. Drinking plenty of water regularly throughout the day can help prevent many of these heat-related issues.
Store Your Medications Properly:
High temperatures can impact the effectiveness of your medication. It is important to note the instructions on the back of your medicine, and do as it says. Most medications will suggest where to store it and in what temperatures to store it in. Never store your medications in the car, and be wary of taking them around with you if you are spending the whole day outside in high temperatures.
Stay Out of the Heat:
Staying out of the heat may seem impossible, but it is possible to make some minor changes so that you can still enjoy being outside during the summer without risking your health. At the beach, lay under a big umbrella, wear hats and sunglasses, and stay inside between the hours of 12pm-3pm, when the heat is at its highest.
Know when to Exercise:
When you exercise, your body warms up and sweat could make it so that dehydration is easier. It is important to exercise when the temperature has cooled down. You may want to exercise during the early mornings or in the evenings, to prevent spikes in your blood sugar. And again, remember to drink plenty of water while exercising.
Test Your Blood Sugar Levels Frequently:
Since temperatures can make your sugar levels fluctuate, it is a good idea to test your sugar levels more frequently than usual. This will let you know whether you need to take immediate actions.
Summer can be a very fun time for vacations and family get-togethers, but heat can affect your blood sugar levels.
Diabetics need to follow certain steps to prevent risky situations. If you would like to get more suggestions about how to manage chronic conditions such as diabetes, our experienced physicians are always there to help! Call us at (561) 434-1935 today, to schedule an appointment!