Diabetes Awareness Month | Torrance Memorial

Published on November 18, 2021

November is Diabetes Awareness Month

Torrance Memorial's Outpatient Diabetes Care staff are here to help you manage your diabetes.

diabetes monitor

By Carole Jakucs, MSN, RN, CDCES, PHN

Diabetes is one of the Top-10 leading causes of death for people living in the U.S.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2018, 27 million doctor office visits were made by people who had diabetes as their primary medical diagnosis.

But did you know, it does NOT have to be this way? There is a lot you can do to help control your diabetes.

Keeping your blood glucose under better control and “in-range” can help prevent many of the acute (sudden) and chronic (long-term) complications that can come from having diabetes.

Regardless of what type of diabetes you have, if you need help controlling your blood glucose, speak with your physician about getting a referral to schedule a visit with us at the Torrance Memorial Outpatient Specialty Center in our Diabetes Care office for diabetes self-management training.

When you visit us for your training, which is also called, diabetes self-management education and support (DSMES) we will work you in a one-on-one basis at your initial visit, to determine your diabetes care needs and discuss your goals regarding managing your diabetes.

Our diabetes care staff are RNs (registered nurses) and RDNs (registered dietician nutritionists) and are board-certified in providing diabetes care and education.

Our focus is to help you identify ways to reach your diabetes self-care goals in an individualized way, while also considering your daily habits and lifestyle values as part of your plan for self-care.

After your first visit with us, you can also attend our group classes as part of your ongoing diabetes education, to help further sharpen your diabetes self-management skills.

Our group classes meet once per week, for four weeks, and last approximately two-hours each session. Each class is taught by one of our diabetes educators, who provides you with four more weeks of valuable diabetes self-management insight and education.

Whether you have Type 1 Diabetes, Type 2 Diabetes, or Gestational Diabetes, we are here to help you. Here is an overview of what we do:

Diet

We’ll show you how your diet can greatly impact your blood glucose (blood sugar). We’ll talk about the importance of counting carbohydrates (carbs), and having an awareness of what you eat, when you eat, along with portion sizes. All of these can help keep your blood glucose under control.

Exercise

We’ll share with you the latest guidance on exercise and how daily exercise is another important tool in your toolbox, to help you better manage your blood glucose.

Medications

Whether you’re on one diabetes medication or several, we’ll teach you about the importance of taking your medications as prescribed and in the way they were designed to work. We’ll discuss how the correct timing of diabetes medications can help them work better – so you get the maximum benefit from each of them, to help you achieve better blood glucose control.

Self-Monitoring your Blood Glucose

Self-monitoring blood glucose (SMBG) is key in helping you get to know your body. You’ll see how your foods, medications and exercise habits affect your blood glucose in real-time. If you are already SMBG, great. If not, we will teach you how.

Healthy Coping Strategies and Stress Management

Stress is a part of life. But a high level of stress can cause your blood glucose to go up. So, learning how to manage your stress in healthy ways, is an essential part of your diabetes self-care plan to help you control your blood glucose.

Problem Solving

At one time or another, most people face problems with their diabetes self-management along with other parts of their daily lives.

Challenges can change over time and may seem frustrating. Problems with diabetes self-management may be minimal for some people, while for others there can be many.

Some examples:

  • Lack of time to engage in diabetes self-care (exercise, SMBG, eating healthy)
  • Financial burdens that prevent you from getting medications and/or supplies
  • Family and/or friends that discourage you from eating healthy or exercising

We’ll highlight some affective ways to solve diabetes self-care problems, so when they strike, you’ll feel better prepared to take them on and problem solve.

We look forward to helping you learn how to better manage your diabetes and hope to see you soon.

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