You get up, get showered, get breakfast, get to work. You have
bills, therefore you have a job.
But you also have diabetes. You have to care for your diabetes
while you're at work. Here are 10 tips for merging your diabetes
care with your career.
- Wear medical identification jewelry
- If you ever need medical assistance at work, the emergency
medical personnel will know you have diabetes.
- Decide who to tell
- All things being equal, it might be in your best interest to
let a few trusted co-workers or your boss know. Just for your
- Give your co-workers a chance
- Don't just assume that your boss won't accommodate you, or
that your co-workers won't be helpful. Give them a chance to
grasp what diabetes is and understand how they can help you,
particularly if you've been diagnosed since starting your
current job. Diabetes may be as new to them as it is to you.
- Get it in writing
- If necessary, get a doctor's note. It may help to get a
medical statement from your doctor saying what your diabetes
care needs are. Present it to your company nurse or human
resources department, and make sure your supervisor gets a copy.
- Be your own advocate
- Your local hospital or diabetes center may offer programs
through which diabetes educators can come to your workplace and
explain to your human resources department, supervisors, or
co-workers what diabetes is and how they can make the workplace
more diabetes-friendly. See if your employer is willing to host
such a program.
- Don't abuse the system
- Unfortunately, there are people who claim extensive health
challenges and reap disability benefits their situation may not
warrant. That makes it harder for everyone. It's best to save
sick days and disability pay for when you really need them.
- Plan ahead
- The biggest challenge many people with diabetes face is access
to meals and breaks. Have snacks readily available should you
need to treat a low.
- Take your equipment with you
- Keep your blood glucose meter and supplies where you can reach
them. Don't leave blood glucose meters or insulin in the car.
Extreme temperatures can affect them.
- Watch out for stress
- Stress can wreak havoc on your blood sugars. Stress can cause
either high or low blood sugar. It differs from person to
person, and sometimes from situation to situation in the same
person. Stress may mask symptoms of low blood sugar, or prompt
completely different symptoms. Frequent monitoring is your best
- Keep good diabetes control
- The best thing you can do to remain productive is to stay
healthy. Don't let your diabetes get so far out of control that
you're not able to work. If you're eating well, exercising, and
controlling your blood sugars, you will have a productive work
The payoff from a job well done is that if and when you need to
take time off for your diabetes care, your boss and co-workers
will remember your good track record and be that much more
willing to cover for you or help you with scheduling. By
communicating with your employer and taking responsibility for
your care, you can incorporate your diabetes care into your work
If you feel that your employer is not making reasonable
accommodations to allow you to care for your diabetes at work,
contact the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) at:
(800) 669-4000 or (800) 669-6820 TTY.
Ask your doctor about diabetes and have your blood sugar checked
several times a year.
For more information about diabetes, including a Diabetes Quiz
and a Free booklet, visit our website at:
This 20 page FREE booklet will provide you with in-depth
information on comprehensive diabetes care. The 7 principles, or
steps, will help you to understand, manage and diagnose your
potential diabetes risk.
It could help you live a longer and more active life. The
booklet is Yours absolutely FREE - No Risk! Share it NOW with
the people you love and want to Keep alive!
David Anderson is a freelance health/wellness writer for
hope4diabetes.com. Email contact information is available
on the website. For telephone contact: (316) 541-2208