The Diabetes Council shares that diabetes is the leading cause for kidney failure; in fact, as many as half of all diabetics will be diagnosed with some type of kidney damage in their lifetime. However, there are steps that those with diabetes can take to prevent kidney disease. The Phoenix home health care experts at Nightingale Homecare share the following common questions about diabetes and its connection to kidney disease, and the answers to help keep diabetics healthy:
- Am I at a greater risk for kidney disease than those without diabetes? There is a link between kidney disease and the glucose control issues inherent in diabetes, but those with high blood pressure, poor diet and genetic history for kidney disease are also at heightened risk.
- How can I tell if I have kidney disease? Symptoms may not be evident in the early stages of the disease, but as the disease progresses, patients may experience nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite, weight gain, and eventually fluid in the lungs and heart failure. A simple test to detect levels of protein in the urine can indicate kidney disease, so it’s important for those with diabetes to closely follow the physician’s recommendations for ongoing blood work and other tests to monitor for kidney disease and other complications.
- How can I prevent kidney disease? Carefully and consistently checking blood sugar levels is crucial, as well as adhering to all doctors’ orders and taking medications exactly as prescribed. An in-home care provider, such as the Phoenix home health care team at Nightingale Homecare, can be invaluable in reducing the risk for developing complications such as kidney disease from diabetes.
- What treatment options are available if I am diagnosed with kidney disease? Certain types of high blood pressure medications have been found to reduce the pressure in the kidneys, helping to stop or delay the progression of kidney disease in those with diabetes. A diet low in protein may also be beneficial. Dialysis or a kidney transplant may be a viable option as well. The physician will be able to recommend the best treatment option for each individual.
- How can home care help? A professional home care agency can help individuals with diabetes and kidney disease in a number of ways. Specifically, Nightingale Homecare’s Pathlink Chronic Disease Management program uses nationally-recognized standards of care to help seniors actively manage chronic conditions such as diabetes, allowing them to fully understand their diagnosis, improve outcomes, and reduce hospitalizations. Our Pathlink program includes:
- Education for improved self-management skills
- Integration of “High-touch” approach to provide frequent contact with those most at risk of re-hospitalization
- Evidence based interventions built on adult learning principles
- Health literacy assessment and intervention tools
- Innovative strategies for working with non-adherent patients
- Technology for effective patient management and ongoing clinical oversight
Whether enrolling in our comprehensive Pathlink program, or selecting other skilled or home care services, our fully trained and skilled nurses and home health care aides can help in a variety of ways, including:
- Blood draws
- Glucose monitoring
- Education on effective diabetes management techniques
- Diabetic self-management skills
- Medication reminders
- Chronic disease management
- Transportation to medical appointments and treatments
- Meal planning and preparation in conjunction with any dietary restrictions
- Friendly companionship
- And much, much more
To learn more about how we can help with diabetes management and to keep seniors healthy and thriving, in the comfort of home, contact the in-home care specialists at Nightingale Homecare. Our Phoenix home health care professionals are available any time to answer questions, consult with you and your senior loved one at home, and provide individualized home care services to enhance quality of life and overall health and wellbeing. Contact us at (602) 504-1555 to learn more.