Why Are Blood Sugar Numbers Important?
When your older family member goes to the doctor for a checkup, one test the doctor may order is a blood sugar, or blood glucose, test. If the senior has prediabetes or diabetes, a blood sugar test is an even more important part of determining their health. Understanding blood sugar tests and the resulting numbers can give you a better idea of your aging relative’s health or how well their diabetes treatment is working.

What is Blood Glucose?

Blood glucose is a kind of sugar that is transported through the body in the bloodstream. The glucose is used by cells as a source of energy. The body gets glucose from the foods your older family member eats, mainly carbohydrates.

The digestive system breaks down carbohydrates into different kinds of sugar molecules. Glucose is a simple kind of sugar results from the breakdown of carbohydrates. Because it is a simple sugar, cells can easily use it for energy. It moves directly into the bloodstream from the digestive tract.

After eating, blood glucose levels are higher. This signals the pancreas to release insulin, which is needed to move glucose from the bloodstream into the cells. In people who are diabetic, the pancreas either doesn’t make enough insulin or cells become resistant to the effects of insulin. This causes glucose to remain in the bloodstream, making blood sugar levels higher than they should be.

What is Considered Healthy?

For a healthy person, a fasting blood glucose level that is lower than 99 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) is considered normal. People with diabetes tend to have more fluctuation in their levels. Doctors typically recommend that they keep their levels within a target range, usually between 70 and 130 mg/dL. However, if your aging relative has diabetes, their doctor may set a different target range. They should follow the doctor’s advice.

Why is Blood Sugar Testing Especially Important for Diabetics?

Diabetics usually monitor their blood sugar at home. It is important that older adults with diabetes follow the testing schedule and instructions for medication they receive from their doctor. Blood glucose testing helps diabetics and their doctors to:
  • Determine if they are reaching goals.
  • See how certain foods and activities impact their blood sugar levels.
  • Monitor the effectiveness of medications.
  • Know whether levels are too high or too low.
If your older family member has diabetes, a home care provider can help them to manage blood sugar levels. Home care providers can remind them to test their blood sugar and keep track of the results. Home care providers can also prepare balanced meals that help to keep blood sugar levels steady. In addition, if your older family member is prone to forgetting to take medications, a home care provider can remind them when it is time.

Sources
https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/diabetes/overview/managing-diabetes/know-blood-sugar-numbers#tips
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/249413.php
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/diabetes/in-depth/blood-sugar/art-20046628

If you or an aging loved one are considering homecare in Avenues, UT, contact the caring staff at Interim Healthcare. Call today 801-401-3515.?

Author: Michael and Marlena Hawkins, Owners, Interim HealthCare, Salt Lake City, UT 

Interim HealthCare of Salt Lake City has been in business since February 2014, providing in-home personal care and support services that help our elderly and/or disabled neighbors live enriched, safe and independent lives. Our goal is to provide customized care and support services that make it possible for our clients to remain in the comfort of their own homes rather than relocate to an assisted living facility. Interim HealthCare is family owned by Michael and Marlana Hawkins, and is a Veteran Owned Small Business.

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