Record Keeping

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Record keeping is a critical part of diabetes self-care. Patients often rely on the meter memory to store information for their provider instead of writing down results. However, the meter memory is not a replacement for a written record. Ideally, the blood glucose values should be analyzed by the patient on an ongoing basis to determine the adequacy of glycemic control, and to make adjustments in insulin doses when necessary. This requires comparing several days' results t Q

ft to look for recurring problems that suggest a need to change the insulin doses (so-called pattern management), which underscores the need for a written record. An underutilized part of the record is the comment section in which pertinent information should be recorded. Comments about unusuaJ diet, activity, stress, or medication changes can help to determine the cause of abnormal blood glucose values and the effectiveness of corrective actions. Also, it is important that the provider review the glucose log at each visit as this can increase patient motivation and aid in their learning how to solve problems and self-manage. Thus, regularly recording and analyzing their blood glucose values allows patients to become proactive rather than reactive in their diabetes management.

Noncompliance is an overused word. If an individual does not test or keep written records, exploring his or her reasons in a nonjudgmental way can provide insight. Common causes include inadequate education as to the importance of SBGM, testing burnout, frustration at test results, cost, discomfort, inconvenience of carrying equipment or taking the time to test, hiding the diagnosis from others, and denial. Monitoring can elicit unpleasant emotions from patients who view their results as unacceptable. These patients may need counseling to help them understand that their results are a feedback tool for problem solving, not a reflection of themselves for overly critical self-judgment.

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All you need is a proper diet of fresh fruits and vegetables and get plenty of exercise and you'll be fine. Ever heard those words from your doctor? If that's all heshe recommends then you're missing out an important ingredient for health that he's not telling you. Fact is that you can adhere to the strictest diet, watch everything you eat and get the exercise of amarathon runner and still come down with diabetic complications. Diet, exercise and standard drug treatments simply aren't enough to help keep your diabetes under control.

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