Fears of a Type 1 Diabetic

Type 1 Diabetes is scary and stressful. Let’s just say it’s life-changing, not only for the person diagnosed but for everyone around them as well. Hearing the diagnosis of Type 1 Diabetes invokes a list of fears. Fears for not only you but for those around you. I was 7 when I was diagnosed and still remember it like it was yesterday. Falling asleep in class, frequent trips to the bathroom and constantly thirsty. One trip to the doctor and there I was in the hospital with my family being told the news. The news that I had extremely high blood sugar and I was a Type 1 Diabetic.

Fears of a Type 1 Diabetic

I’ve had it for twenty years now and it’s not going away. Over the last twenty years, I have been told, “There will be a cure in 5 years”. Even with the advancements in the medical world, there still isn’t a cure. There are tons of devices to help make managing Type 1 Diabetes easier but even those aren’t 100% and without the right insurance or the right amount of money, many people can’t afford proper healthcare to make life with this disease easier.

Fears of a Type 1 Diabetic

Living with Type 1 Diabetes is living in fear every day. What are those fears you ask? Well, here are a few that come to my mind.

Dead in bed syndrome.

Yes, that’s a real thing and a scary one. Dead in bed syndrome is exactly that. Dead. In. Bed. Not waking up after falling asleep from your blood sugar being too high or too low. Your blood sugar could even be perfect but other complications come along with being a diabetic and those complications could be fatal. And having a loved one being the one to find you makes the fear even worse.

Low blood sugar while driving, especially if you have your children in the vehicle with you.

A Type 1 Diabetics blood sugar can drop from sneezing, for real. Our bodies are so finicky that any little thing can cause a change in blood sugar levels even if we give the correct insulin dosage. As a mother to a beautiful 3 year old, I could not imagine something happening to me while driving with her in tow. We are told to keep something sugary within reach at all times for this exact reason.

My children getting the same diagnosis.

No one else in my family is a Type 1 Diabetic so I guess I drew the short straw on that one. I live in fear every day that my child will start showing symptoms and be told she too has Type 1 Diabetes. I lived through it for 20 years and I could not imagine having her go through that as well.

Losing health insurance.

The cost of treatment for Type 1 Diabetes is ridiculous. I am on 2 different types of insulin and each cost $500+ a month without insurance. There is also my glucose monitor that requires test strips and lancets. I have to keep insulin syringes, glucose tablets and alcohol swabs in stock as well as a backup glucose monitor in case of failure from the other. Those supplies alone can be $200 or more a month. I am currently on manual insulin injections because I could not afford to use the insulin pump or continuous glucose monitoring system anymore. Without insurance, the insulin pump is dang near $10,000 (not including the monthly supplies to be able to use it) and the glucose monitoring system isn’t any cheaper. Luckily, I have pretty good health insurance but losing it would be fatal.

Fears of a Type 1 Diabetic

Unfortunately, okra water, cinnamon, not eating sweets and any of the other off the wall “cures” won’t work so until there is a cure the fears will be there. Not only for me but for the millions of others that got the unfortunate diagnosis of Type 1 Diabetes.

Being a Type 1 Diabetic there isn’t a cure and management can be tricky. Here are 4 tips I do to help me have somewhat control and lessen the fears from my diagnosis.

  1. I always take my insulin about 15 minutes before I eat. Doing this allows the insulin to kick in and help reduce the possible blood sugar spike that might happen after eating.
  2. Test and treat, don’t put it off. I get distracted easily and often forget to eat or take my insulin to correct my blood sugar which in turn makes it worse.
  3. Last but not least is don’t feel alone because you aren’t. Feeling alone and like no one understands is not good for your body and it causes stress. Stress can trigger your blood sugars to fluctuate and make managing harder.
  4. Please consult with your doctor before trying any tips I have suggested. What works for me does not mean that it will work the same for you.
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