Diabetes is a condition that affects the ability of the body to produce or use the hormone insulin to lessen the sugar in the blood. Some people with this condition might be concerned about being at a higher risk group of getting the COVID-19. Healthcare professionals say that people with diabetes are more likely will not to be infected with COVID-19 than the general population. However, these people are at risk for more severe outcomes based on what it has been so far from some research studies.
Connection Between COVID-19 And Diabetes
The exact cause of severe outcomes in people with COVID-19 and diabetes is not yet known. Over the years, it has been suggested that those with diabetes might have impaired immune systems. Wherein, it could affect their ability to health from a disease quickly. Diabetes might cause inflammation if uncontrolled for a long period which also affects the immune system.
What You Can Do If You Have COVID-19 And Diabetes
If you are a patient with COVID-19 and diabetes, you may be able to manage it at home. Even if they have diabetes, those who have mild or who are somewhat asymptomatic can be managed at home. These individuals need to monitor their blood sugar levels and symptoms closely. If this individual is not capable of controlling their blood sugars or if their symptoms are getting worse, they should call a doctor right away. This could mean that the infection is getting worse.
Also, it is recommended that at home, those individuals who are insulin-dependent must have ketone testing kits so that when they are sick, they can monitor their ketone levels. Patients should also assess their prescriptions with their doctor to see if there are any that must be placed on hold or if dosages must be changed during this time. If hospitalization is needed, patients might be considering bringing their supplies to help lessen the exposure of the clinical staff from frequent entry into the room. The supplies may include:
- Insulin needles or pens
- Glucometer or continuous glucose monitor
- Extra supplies for insulin pump
Who Is Most At Risk?
While diabetes type does not affect the response of a person to the COVID-19, whether or not they have co-morbidities, and how well-managed their diabetes is, has an impact. The body distinguishes and responds to hyperglycemia regardless of the cause. It can be that the patient who has type-1 diabetes may tend to get complications later on. Studies have shown that those individuals who manage well their diabetes and who were hospitalized for COVID-19 have a higher rate of survival.
Managing Your Diabetes During COVID-19
Here are some recommendations to lessen the risk of being infected with COVID-19:
- Practice hand hygiene
- Avoid large gatherings
- Maintain a distance of more than 6 feet from others
- Wear a face mask especially when going outside
Patients must manage their diabetes by:
- Improving diet
- Maintaining blood sugars at goal and avoid fluctuations in blood sugars
- Making sure that heart disease or hypertension are being treated well
- Exercising regularly at home