Coronaviru: Diabetes and COVID-19

When it comes to being infected with COVID-19, everyone needs to be careful. If you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, you should be even more cautious.
Your risk for getting the virus isn’t higher than anyone else’s, but if you have diabetes, your complications from coronavirus could be worse. Issues from COVID-19 can be even worse if your diabetes isn’t well managed. Maintaining good hygiene, social distancing, and keeping your blood sugar under control can help to reduce your chance of getting infected.

Coronavirus and Diabetes

Early statistics of COVID-19 cases showed that about 25% of people that were admitted to the hospital for severe COVID-19 infections had diabetes. Further studies show that those with diabetes were also more likely to have serious complications for the virus and to die. One reason for this is that high blood sugar levels weaken the immune system making it harder for your body to fight off infections. Your risk of severe coronavirus infection is even higher if you have another serious condition, like heart disease.

Tips to Avoid Infection

The best way to avoid catching the coronavirus is to stay at home. This virus has an infectious period of up to 14 days and can spread through breathing, talking, and physical contact. If you must go out in public, keep at least 6 feet away from other people and wash your hands frequently. You should wash your hands every time you come back from public places with warm water and soap for at least 30 seconds. This goes for everyone in your house as well.

Some people that contract the virus may not show symptoms, but they can still transmit COVID-19. In addition to frequent hand washing, avoid sharing utensils. If anyone in your home becomes sick, they should be quarantined to their own room, as far as possible from you.

What to Do if You Get Sick

If you start feeling sick, stay home and quarantine yourself from everyone in your home. Check your blood sugar more often than usual. Coronavirus can reduce your appetite and cause you to eat less, which could affect your levels. Drink plenty of water. If you are experiencing coronavirus-like symptoms, call your doctor and make sure to have your recent blood sugar and ketone readings available. For more advise for COVID-19 and emergency instructions, visit the following websites:

https://www.houstonmethodist.org/virtual-urgent-care/
http://www.memorialhermann.org/virtual-care/

Diabetes Texas will continue seeing our patients via telemedicine services to help reduce the spread COVID-19.