So I took a nap, yesterday afternoon when I started to feel a bit sluggish. My blood sugars were fine and I was waiting for a buyer to come pick up some furniture I’m trying to sell. It was mid-afternoon and the sun was warming the living room and my couch was doing that strange whispering thing: “Go to sleep… Go to sleep…” No? Maybe that’s just me. So, anyway I fall asleep for a short nap. When I awoke a little while later, my head felt as though someone has tightened a vice on it and my throat felt as though it had been refinished with a belt sander. I had apparently caught a cold…
I know, I know… There’s a standing joke that when a guy catches a cold, he makes it seem like it’s the end of the world. Although I know a few guys who fall under this category, I assure you this isn’t the case.
One of the big problems with being a Type 1 Diabetic (Like there aren’t plenty!) is that it compromises one’s immune system and causes one to catch every little bug that comes along.
According to the Mayo Clinic, a cold is a viral infection of the nose and throat. It’s generally harmless, although symptoms often don’t make it feel that way. The average person recovers from the common cold within 5 to 10 days, unless it’s accompanied with a fever or other aggravating factors, and the symptoms usually show up days after you’ve actually caught the cold. The Mayo Clinic website explains this in further detail and can be read here: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/common-cold/symptoms-causes/syc-20351605
For someone with Diabetes, some symptoms become aggravated and blood sugar levels are often affected. This is because the body will release particulars hormones to help combat the viral infection. That added release of hormones makes it difficult for your insulin to be effectively used and can cause a raise in blood sugar levels.
Not that this doesn’t apply to non-Diabetics, but it becomes extremely important to consume fluids regularly to help prevent further issues. This will also help to better control your blood sugar while trying to combat the illness. unlike most people, we don’t have the benefit of a loss of appetite. Although you may not be hungry, a Diabetic needs to try and eat at least small amounts every hour or so.
Over the counter medications are doable, but one has to be sure to read the information label to ensure that they don’t contain sugar. This is especially the case with cough syrups and cough drops.
Test your blood sugar frequently and do your best to try and maintain your levels. The only thing worse than cold symptoms would be slipping into ketoacidosis, which would be side effect of dehydration during illness.
Now if you’ll all excuse me, I’m going to curl into a ball on the couch with my blankie…