Okay so these are both relatively tricky for me to explain, as my education on the disease was very brief since I had to be back in Boston two weeks after getting diagnosed. So they rushed through a lot of things with me.
Your A1C is basically a score that tells you your average blood sugar for the past three months. So if your A1C scores at 7, then your average blood sugar for the past couple months is around 150. My A1C is currently 5.6, so my average blood sugar for the past few months is in the range of 80 and 100. If you google “A1C chart” you’ll find a bunch of useful little charts that can give you a good visual of what i’m talking about. Generally, the lower the A1C the better, as long as you’re not averaging out too low.
Ketones…Okay. So Ketones are acids that develop in your body when your blood sugar has run high for an extended amount of time. They can be dangerous if unattended to, as they can become poisonous to the body. When ketones are of abundance in the body, you develop DKA (diabetic ketoacidosis). DKA builds up slowly, but the symptoms will be noticeable and shouldn’t be ignored. If you ignore your symptoms, it can become very dangerous. DKA should be treated in the hospital.
Here is a link on the ADA’s website with more details on ketones and DKA. The website in general is very very helpful so definitely bookmark it; you can get a lot of information from there.
Of course, I’m all about raising awareness!! So thanks for asking.
I guess the biggest thing is that T1D is incredibly exhausting. Having to take it into consideration for everything that you do (eating, going to bed, the weather, going out with friends, exercising) is just tiring. And the fact that it is not controllable…only manageable…makes it very frustrating to deal with at times. I guess patience is key here. Sometimes it can get in the way of one’s ability to go out or to carry on with things in their day that you would normally be able do. For example, for a lot of diabetics, after suffering from a hypoglycemic episode, they tend to feel pretty lousy for a while. A diabetic hangover, some people call it. It’s harder to find the energy to continue with the day as planned. If he ever cancels plans on you or doesn’t feel like going out, just understand that it’s probably because his sugars are acting up that day.
Make sure your boyfriend has informed you about how to use his supplies in case he needs help. Make sure you know what a low is, what a high is, what needs to happen if he goes unconscious or is incapable of attending to his lows on his own.
Also be sure to validate his feelings and let him know that he’s not inconveniencing you with his disease. A lot of diabetics (myself included) often feel like they’re being a burden on people because they have to cancel plans, or take extra time before meals to take their insulin, etc.
I’m not really in any kind of serious relationship right now, so I’m not sure what else is important to note. I could have sworn that someone recently made a post about what a diabetic’s partner should know…but I’m not sure where it is right now. If anyone knows where that is…let me know.
Also if anyone has anything else to add, please do!!
P.S. I’m currently reading a book called Diabetes Rising by Dan Hurley and so far it’s been a very easy, informative, and entertaining read. I think you might enjoy it.
I’m gonna make a youtube channel that is nothing but me acting out misconceptions and invalid humor about diabetes in an incredibly sarcastic manner.
Episode 1: Taste the Diabetes
"Hello yes I would like to order the diabetes cake please. Thank you so much."
*takes a bite of cake*
"Wow I can really taste the chronic illness in this frosting. Are those DKA shavings on top there? This filling reminds me exactly of that dangerous low I had last week. Mmm seizures."
Episode 2: The Natural Cure
"Tonight, I will perform a spell that will bring my beta cells back from the dead."
*Proceeds to rub cucumber over belly while chanting incoherently.”
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