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In fact, the number one thing you can do to manage your disease is to follow the advice of your care providers. They will ensure you take the proper medication at the proper dosage. But there are also proactive things you can do at home to help your medicine help you.
Many type 2 diabetes patients are able to manage their diabetes with just diet and exercise. When that isn’t enough, there are a number of other medications that can help your body use the insulin it produces more effectively. The Mayo Clinic provides a helpful list and description of these treatments. Many don’t require injections.
Insulin can be affected by changes in temperature. The Mayo Clinic recommends that you store your insulin properly and not past its expiration date. Otherwise, it may not be effective in managing your blood sugar levels.
Be consistent with your insulin. Take it at the recommended time every day. Make it a part of your normal daily routine. As an added precaution, use alerts on your smartphone to set daily reminders.
Diabetes Educator suggests that you rotate your injection sites every day. Alternate between the “fattier part of your upper arm, to outer thighs, to buttocks, to abdomen. Otherwise, you can get lumps under the skin, making it harder for your body to absorb the insulin.”
It’s important that you talk to your doctor or pharmacist about all the medicines you take. This includes prescription medications for other conditions, over-the-counter drugs, supplements and vitamins. They may affect your diabetes medication or your blood sugar levels.
The choices you make about food and exercise, combined with good habits you develop about taking your medication, can have a positive impact on the management of your diabetes.
Originally published 8/17/2019; Revised 2021
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