Managing diabetes is a team effort involving families, children/teens and your diabetes team. And it takes more than meeting with your provider every three months. To make sure your child's diabetes is under control at all times, follow these tips for communicating with your diabetes provider between visits.
- Know who is a part of your diabetes team. At the Diabetes Center for Children, nurse practitioners, endocrinologists, social workers, dietitians and certified diabetes educators are all part of your team. These experts work together to provide you with the best care possible.
- Learn how to best communicate with your diabetes team between appointments. That may be by email or phone, depending on the members of your team.
- Use a blood glucose log to keep track of blood sugars, insulin doses, carbohydrate intake and exercise. This may be a written log, computer spreadsheet or mobile app. You should watch for trends and patterns in blood sugars, such as a high or low blood sugar at the same time of day for three to four days a week. If you need help with insulin dose adjustments, contact your diabetes provider.
- Download your insulin pump routinely at home using the appropriate software. If you need technical support, call the phone number found on the back of your pump. If you need help with pump setting adjustments, notify your provider.
- Get the most out of your clinic visit. Bring blood glucose logs or download your glucose meter or insulin pump prior to your visit.
- Think about questions before you come to your visit. It can help to write them down in advance.
Tips for parents of teens
- Encourage your teen to meet with his diabetes provider alone for a few minutes during every visit. This gives your teen a chance to develop an independent relationship with his provider.
- Try hard to let your teen answer questions that his provider asks. Encourage your teen to add information to answers that you give, too.
- Encourage your teen to contact the provider in between visits as needed. Teens and young adults will need to do this especially as they get ready for college or are about to graduate from high school. If your teen does not feel ready to call or email her provider independently, have her sit with you while you call or email the provider with questions, then copy your teen on the email.