MARQUETTE COUNTY — COVID–19 can cause additional problems for those with preexisting health conditions. One of the diseases the coronavirus can be especially difficult on is diabetes.
People with diabetes are not at a higher risk of contracting COVID–19 than anyone else. However, if they do become infected, they can develop a number of complications as a result.
“The outcomes get worse if the diabetes is not in control,” explains Chris Alderton, an RN with UP Health System – Marquette. “Longer healing times, more pneumonia, all the other complications, if the diabetes is not in control it takes longer to heal. And by having fluctuating blood sugars, it puts them at a risk for numerous other complications that come from being sick.”
Alderton says the most important thing is for diabetes patients to do is to consistently monitor their health and take care of themselves properly.
“They should be testing their blood sugar, taking their oral medications or injecting their insulin when they’re supposed to, getting out, exercising, maintaining their diet,” says Alderton. “All the general diabetes care that diabetics know about, before COVID.”
Alderton says those with diabetes should always make sure they’re following social distancing guidelines and taking precautions to prevent contracting COVID–19.
If a person with diabetes experiences a fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, they should contact their healthcare provider as soon as possible.