Luke came home early on Wednesday, skipping swim practice, because he didn’t feel well. He couldn’t really explain it… he was dizzy. He was nauseous. He had a fever. He felt like he was living inside of a bubble. He stayed home from youth group that night and school the next day.
This was the first time he’s been sick and down-for-the-count since he’s been diagnosed with T1. Being sick and having Type 1 is a whole different ballgame than it was pre-diagnosis. There are so many things you have to watch.
Blood sugar. Even if he eats normally and boluses like he usually does, being sick can cause his sugars to go crazy low or crazy high, or both. Luke ran a little higher than normal, but never went above 200 to our knowledge. (We are still on our Dex break, so I don’t know for sure.) However, he was pretty low before bed. His sugar was 89, but typically is in the 120s or so at his bedtime check. This made me really nervous without a cgm! We gave him extra uncovered carbs- about 30 total uncovered carbs- and I set my alarm for 2 a.m. for a sugar check. I’m so glad we gave him extra carbs. He was at about 105 at his 2 a.m. check.
Eating and staying hydrated. In order for insulin and Luke’s body to do its job, he needs to be sure he’s eating and, especially, staying hydrated. Luke doesn’t normally want to drink or eat anything when he’s sick. But having T1, he has to eat and drink regularly. Fortunately, he understands this and ate the soup, saltines, and soda I went out and got for him. (Especially the soda… Diet Cherry 7Up makes everything better!) He also guzzled a couple of Gatorade G2s.
Checking ketones. Even if Luke’s blood sugar stays within range, he can still get ketones when he is sick. (This is the reason it’s so important that he eats and drinks while he is sick.) Every time Luke used the bathroom, he had to check ketones using Ketostix. (Which I had to run out and buy because we were out here at home. Ack!) Fortunately, he never had ketones. If he did, we would follow the protocol from the endo to try to get rid of the ketones at home. If we couldn’t get rid of them, we would need to go in to the doctor or the ER for some help. Ketones are what could eventually become DKA, which is why Luke was hospitalized when he was diagnosed.
Our diabetes educator has given us a sick day protocol to follow for days like these. We also printed off this sick day flow chart from Nationwide Children’s Hospital to have on hand. (Thanks, Sara!)
Luke was able to return to school on Friday, but was completely exhausted by the time school was over. He’s slowly kicking this bug, but I’m so glad that we didn’t have to worry too much about him while he was sick this time. I’m proud of Luke, too, for taking care of himself while we were at work on Thursday. He kept track of his temperature, his blood sugar level, and his ketones, and stayed hydrated… and he kept me in the loop, as well. He’s such a great kid!