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T1 Newly Diagnosed - Here We Go!

Discussion in 'Newly Diagnosed' started by AlexD14, Jun 18, 2021.

  1. AlexD14

    AlexD14 · Member

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    Hello folks! My name's Alex and I'm 26. I was recently diagnosed with T1 Diabetes and beginning to get to grips with it all.

    I'd like to say that my diagnosis comes as a bit of a shock, but it really isn't. I'd been feeling run-down for a while: I was feeling tired all the time, I couldn't focus, I was irritable and lacked motivation do any of the things I usually enjoy doing. I've also been an active person - not too much into intense exercise more doing lots of walking - and haven't had issues with weight in years (I was a chubby teenager). But when my weight started dropping I knew deep down there was something wrong but put it to the back of my mind.

    Whilst my family have no histoy of diabetes - either type 1 or 2 - I'm not ignorant of the symptoms. I imagine most people like to assume that diabetes is something that only affects people who're overweight and sedentary but I did know better and should've gone to see a Dr. much sooner.

    Going back to my diagnosis, in a nutshell I was called into my GP surgery after they'd recieved the results of a blood test showing elevated blood glucose. They did the pick-prick test for BG and Ketones; I was then told I'd need to head to hospital - I was at serious risk of going into DKA. Stayed in hospital on an IV for about 3 days - from Friday afternoon until Monday morning - then a day where I was taught how to inject and prick myself.

    I'm now seeing the Diabetes team on a weekly basis, got carb counting classes starting in July and am getting better at injecting myself. It is difficult to start with - lots of anxiety around were I'm injecting, whether I'm doing it properly, etc - but it gets better with time I'm sure, and I barely feel the needle; which is bonus when I first was told I had T1 my biggest fear was the injections hurting.

    It's going to be a bumpy ride: I've seen my BG fluctuate massively, sometimes seemingly independent of whether I've eaten or taken insulin recently. I've had some bad news on Wednesday, I might have some Diabetic Retinopathy. Naturally I felt ****** for a large part of the day but I try and take a positive out of it by telling myself: 'this is why I need to control this'.

    I also try and take some positives by exploring all the 'low-carb' recipies that you can find online. I liked doing a bit of baking before, but it's a fresh challenge utilising new ingredients like almond flour over wheat. I've already found I prefer almond pancakes to regular, remind me a bit of those Mr Kipling's Almond Slices.

    Rather than focusing on all the things I can't have without potentially spiking my sugars, I like to think of the foods I can eat and enjoy. Meats, cheese, egg muffins, hummus, yum yum. Bulking out my meals with lots of veg too; which is something I never used to do. My plates have gone from being very beige to having a lot more colour now.

    It's a pain in the ****, having to now do consciously something my body used to do unconsciously but now I'm recieving insulin I feel much better. If I have to put in a lot more effort than I used to in-order to keep feeling this way than I'm happy to put that effort in. Diabetes is a challenge, but that is life, so let's do this!

    (Small edit by mod for language)
     
    • Winner Winner x 2
    • Optimistic Optimistic x 1
    #1 AlexD14, Jun 18, 2021 at 12:06 PM
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 18, 2021
  2. TashT1

    TashT1 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Welcome to the forum. Sorry for the diagnosis but it sounds like you have a great attitude.

    I’ve been diagnosed nearly a year & I’ve learned so much in that time. There have been ups and downs but mostly things are looking good. Fingers crossed an eye test will reveal that any retinopathy isn’t too advanced & I believe the treatment options are very effective.

    If you have any questions just ask, there are lots of people that can offer insights from experience.
     
  3. In Response

    In Response Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Welcome @AlexD14 definitely sounds as if you have had a bumpy ride but it doesn't have to continue that way.
    Do not expect perfection - even people without diabetes can see large fluctuations in the blood sugar levels and they don't have to do the work of a major organ themselves.
    Retinopathy diagnosis is a shock but if it is minor/background it may be reversible. Some find lowering their blood sugar levels too fast can lead to their eyes adapting too quickly and cause problems so the advice is to ease into lower blood sugar levels.

    Diabetes.co.uk is a business that focuses on diabetes management through lower carb diets. So, on this forum, you will find more people with diabetes following a low carb diet than is common elsewhere. I am not knocking it - it works for many people.
    But that doesn't mean it is the only way for people with Type 1 diabetes. I tried it and found insulin dosing incredibly challenging because, as well as carb counting, I had to protein count and found that the insulin dose for 10g protein varied so much depending on the type of protein that I gave up and went back to a "normal diet".
    This approach has done me well, I am able to continue a very active and, sometimes, stressful life with a HbA1C in the low 40s, a "time in range" in the low 80%s and a BMI at the low end of the "healthy range" whilst eating things like pizza, pasta, bread, rice, cakes, chocolate as part of a very varied diet.

    Enjoy your baking, ask questions, don't expect perfection and get ready to learn ... the thing with diabetes is that there is alwayts something new to learn.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Winner Winner x 2
    #3 In Response, Jun 18, 2021 at 1:15 PM
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2021
  4. AlexD14

    AlexD14 · Member

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    Hi Tash, thanks for the warm welcome.
    I've definitely got my fingers crossed, but what's done is done. I might not be able to rectify any damage completely but I can stop it getting worse, and you'e right, after having a quick glance at information on retinopathy, it seems as though there are plenty of effective treatments available. I'm looking forward to learning more and managing the condition as best I can..

    I understand that it's quite possible to manage blood sugar and still enjoy treats; I suppose I'm looking to reduce my levels as quickly as possible and adapting my diet with less carbs helps do that. I'm on fixed doses of insulin currently that we're changing everytime I meet with the diabetic nurse. In the meantime I've recognised that whenever I have my favourite puddings brought from the shop my blood sugars spikes are huge, and it causes me a lot of undue stress and anxiety. I'm on a Libre Freestyle and found myself checking my levels constantly last night as they were high and was tempted to take a unit or two of Novarapid to bring it down, fortunately I managed to banish the thought because it was stupid: I was going to bed and risking a hypo whilst sleeping doesn't sound clever.

    I'm certainly not on a strict low-carb diet, and don't think it's a particularly wise choice for me to try and follow such a diet. But eating a more varied, balanced diet seems to be the way to go: making better choices and learning what affects our body (not just food but physical exercise, emotional states, etc).
     
    • Winner Winner x 1
  5. In Response

    In Response Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Please take care with this.
    I know it is natural to want to be back to "normal" as soon as possible.
    However, our eyes slowly adapt to the different levels of sugar in our tears (it's one way our body tries to get rid of excess blood sugar). If we drop our blood sugars too fast, this can lead to eye damage as they try to adapt too quickly.
    Hence, the advice is usually to bring our levels down slowly.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  6. AlexD14

    AlexD14 · Member

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    No, I understand. I try not to get frustrated but I find myself obsessing a bit about getting my blood sugars into the target area. I need to remind myself that it's a marathon not a sprint.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  7. TashT1

    TashT1 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    It’s an marathon with an undetermined finish line & lots of hurdles & hidden paths along the way. There is so much to learn, I used that to distract myself from constantly checking progress on levels.

    Have a look at Diabetes Uk learning centre, search Hypo programme & do their online learning, Bertie online is good for carb counting & My way digital health have just done a 2 day learning event but it’s only available until Monday.
     
  8. AlexD14

    AlexD14 · Member

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    I can definitely understand that. Fortunatley now I'm feeling more energetic and my concentration is better, I'm finding I'm able to enjoy many of my old hobbies again; things like reading are less of a chore and are enjoyable again. I'll have to do that more and hopefully it'll distract me from scanning the Libre every two minutes!
     
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  9. KK123

    KK123 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    It's natural Alex, when I first started with the libre I was embarrassed when the Nurse said 'oh, you're scanning 60 times a day', gulp!!! I soon got used to my new toy though and now it's down to around 15 times a day (not too bad). x
     
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