Diabetes is a disease that can lead to major health problems if it is not monitored closely. If your senior parent struggles with this disease, moving him or her to an assisted living facility can be highly beneficial. Here are several ways the staff at an assisted living facility can help your parent keep his or her diabetes under control.
Monitor Blood Sugar
One important part of monitoring diabetes is watching blood-sugar levels. With diabetes, the body does not produce insulin to break the sugars down, and this can lead to elevated sugar levels, which are extremely dangerous. Testing blood-sugar levels is something that is offered at most assisted living facilities, and it is normally done with a basic skin prick test. The frequency of testing will depend on the person, but it is not uncommon for a person with diabetes to test their blood-sugar levels three or four times each day.
Blood-sugar levels go up and down all day long, and they vary a lot before and after meals. Normal levels are important for overall good health though, and good levels are usually between 80 to 130 mg/dl between meals. After eating, the level will usually go up, but it should not get higher than 180 mg/dl.
If you are worried that your parent is not monitoring these levels often enough, you will feel better knowing that the staff at an assisted living facility will take care of doing this every day. If your parent is experiencing problems with his or her levels, there will be someone there to help him or her.
Offering Good Nutrition
The meals, snacks, and beverages your parent consumes can play a huge role in his or her blood-sugar levels, and this can be good or bad. If your parent is not eating right, it will be harder to keep these levels under control, and this is another way an assisted living facility can help.
At these facilities, residents are given meals that are healthy and nutritious. When there are diabetic residents, the meals are prepared specially for them. These meals are typically low in sugar and high in vitamins, whole grains, and nutrients. When your parent eats right, he or she will be healthier, and this will be one less thing for you to worry about.
If you have concerns about your senior parent living at home alone, you may want to start looking into a move to an assisted living facility.