Thursday, February 22, 2018

Where to start?




I am typing this out with one eye that is presently seeing 20/20 while the other I see nothing through my centre vision, it’s a hazy veil, and my peripheral vision, is webs of blood, etc.  

Once again, cataract surgery that I had last summer has reared its ugly head.  It is most likely due to the 2nd surgery done last October, to correct a problem in one of the lenses that the ophthalmologist had not been able to insert properly in the beginning (previous blogs explain it all).  Monday comes around (Family Day here in Ontario where everything is closed), with less than a week before seeing him, for follow up, I started to see a lot of floaters, which are blood bits which originally I thought were tiny flies due to a new rose plant I’d been given for Valentine's Day.  Along with these dots, webs, flashes of light in the peripheral vision of that eye ... I thought "fruitcake" what's happening now (if I could turn back time is playing through my head alot over these past 6 months).


Of course, things go through your noggin as you search Dr. Google.  Is it retinopathy finally rearing it’s ugly head after 50+ years of having Type 1 diabetes?  Am I having a stroke (my Mum, had one back in December that caused her to lose her eyesight in one eye)?  Am I developing perhaps a 3rd eye?

Joking aside, after making a call to see my ophthalmologist here, I’ve found what I figured it was via Dr. Google.  Posterior Vitreous Detachment or PVD. It’s common as we age, doesn’t cause blindness, yadda, yadda, yadda.  The 2nd cataract surgery, where I felt very uncomfortable to the point of puking, which I didn’t get with the original surgery, was due to the surgeon giving the eyeball a good workout as he placed the another lens into the eye.  My personal opinion, not that the surgeon will probably admit it, is that 2nd surgery most likely put a lot of strain on the vitreous which surrounds your eyeball.  You can read more about it if you wish from the link above that explains it all very well.

PVD itself is not a sign of a disease or eye health problem

I like that above statement, since I am now looking out of one good eye, and trying my best to wait for the blobs, haziness to disappear, which they say can take up to 6 months and sometimes longer.  I am trying to make myself feel better by saying that at least the retina hasn’t detached, things could be worse.  The things we folks do with various health problems say to ourselves to stay sane.  What me sane???

Again, as my previous blogs have stated with my saga of cataract surgery … 

DO NOT HAVE IT DONE IF IT IS NOT NECESSARY!! 

Also, don't have both eyes done at the same time as a precaution against possible problems.  I would not have to be dealing with this if I’d just listened to my inner gut saying not to do it and my Mum too.



Rosina Kiff - 1935 - 2018 and me, Ann(a) Kiff >^,,<

Monday, January 1, 2018

Life as a Podder Chapter Deux


Well, with the approach of  the New Year I decided to go back to my Animas Vibe after having  issues with the Omnipod in my leg as well as dislike of the PDM (more on that at end).  My legs are an occasional place that I put my infusion sets in but I never had blood sugar results like I was having with the pod … high high high (my meaning of a “high” is anything above 12 mmol/l  or 324 mg/dl ).  Compared to where I had placed the Pod in other areas of my body over the month … it rarely went over except when I didn’t either bolus properly for food, etc.  So obviously, my legs with the plastic cannula … just do not work.  As you can see by the assorted pics below, with the 2nd pod placement … with what looks like watered down blood … maybe the infusion set wasn’t placed quite right, but the window that you can view the placement of the infusion set, is pretty well impossible to see if things are okay. 



I guess my other thing with going back to the Vibe, is the simplicity of changing the suggested amount of insulin, either with using a different ISF or I:C ratio in the calculations that Animas programming allows you to do (see photos below when I'd decided enough is enough with the Omnipod).  The Omnipod PDM doesn't allow you to do this, along with extra steps to see what IOB you have onboard, tick tock tick tock ... my time is precious.  On the Animas below you can change the suggested amount to bolus based on the calculations of the “set” ISF and/or I:C ration.  To give Omnipod at least a run for it's money, I tried and tried with both user manual and forum groups to figure it this was possible … but nope – not doable.  I have a feeling the Omnipod PDM programming is abit on the “basic” side, and more for the person who perhaps doesn’t want to go outside of what the program in the PDM allows you to do.  Probably for the safety of the user, but not all of us follow the rules.  This has been my way of controlling my diabetes over the past 40+ years since leaving the next of home as a teenager.

 I was finding too that when I was really high with the Omnipod … like really high … DKA possibility … that correcting with an insulin injection, based on my calculations (this is what I do when I’m on MDI … using either my noggin’ and or calculator to determine amount of insulin to inject) … would bring me down much faster.  Otherwise, putting that large glob of insulin via the Pod was almost like putting water into me.  Even with doing a split shot of the amount over ½ hour … it just didn’t work well.

Plus, again, that friggin’ huge PDM (yes the clip pouch I was given, more bulkier than a tubed pump IMHO).  I found in the beginning of the months trial as a Podder, that when I was needing to bolus quickly, I often was going to my waistband, where I usually keep my Animas.  

One thing that I did do by accident during the trial run, near the end ... due to how itchy the pod was on my skin, and that was only at the end of Day 1 (this was the only time I had irritation with the pod) . Because I didn't want to lose the insulin left in the pod (would Omnipod have replaced the pod because of that???) ... I stuck it out.  By the time came to remove it, by accident, when placing a new pod in place, without thinking ... I REMOVED A NEWLY INSTALLED SENSOR FOR MY DEXCOM!!!  I broke down at that point, and my hubby gently reminded me it was not the end of the world removing the CGM by accident.  Because I pay out of pocket for the Dexcom, it meant I went for 6 days without the CGMS.  And even now, as I write this, I'm taking a break from the Dexcom so I'm not out of pocket ... but I do miss the CGM the most for staying in the right range I like of blood sugars.

What has me abit miffed, and not just with Omnipod, but also Medtronic.  That the devices they are offering Animas users sort of like “old stock” to be able to make a profit I expect (in Medtronics case they are offering us the MiniMed 630g ( see this link  https://www.medtronicdiabetes.ca/minimed-630g ) .  I recently came across an article about the Omnipod Dash System (read more at these links https://diatribe.org/insulet-omnipod-dash-system-to-add-touchscreen-and-bluetooth and https://forum.fudiabetes.org/t/omnipod-q3-earnings-call-dash-pdm-update/2576 ).  The Dash was expected out in the 2017, but it’s set to launch sometime in 2018.  So, for any Animas users that are getting the “free” PDM offer (which is what I went for) … you’d probably want to upgrade to that, but at what COST is my big question.  I just know that my fingers got split with pushing those darn buttons on the PDM (doesn't help with the cold weather we've been experiencing that's not normal at this time of the year and lack of humidity).  I found it easier to use if I  kept some of my finger nails longer, in order to ease up on bloody thumbs/fingers.  It was abit annoying since I like to keep my claws clipped.

So, that’s it in a nutshell.  I’ll be heading out on holidays for almost 3 weeks, and bringing along both insulin pump systems (yes, have carry on – you can travel with all your medical crap <lol>).  I’ll also be bringing my pen needles, using Fiasp and Levemir as my insulins of choice for control.  Last time I went on a 3 week trip, all I used was MDI, sans CGM (I’m on fence post right now with bringing CGM for this holiday due to the space it takes up for souvenirs <lol>).

See you sometime in February and thanks Boss’s for letting me off the hook for abit of much needed down time from work!

NB:  Remember, my trial with the Omnipod may vary from yours.  So while I may not like it, doesn't necessarily mean you won't.  I've heard through the grapevine that Omnipod is offering the deal up to March now, rather than the end of December.  If you've ever wanted to know what it is like to pump insulin without any tubes, I'd say give it a try.  Perhaps your experience will be much better than mine has been.


Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Cranky one eyed cat

Yuppers, that's been me pretty well since my cataract surgery (see the original post HERE) - that has left one eye slightly buggered up for seeing properly. 

I am hoping I am doing the right thing here, since tomorrow, I am going back under the knife - to remove the original lens ... and have a new one put in place (with or without stitches - it all depends according to my surgeon Dr. Tarkek Youssef ... and yes ... I'm bloody scared!!! 


Like all of us with diabetes, our fear is always having diabetic complications with our eyes.  So far, touch wood, I've been blessed, but since the surgery back in July, it's been non stop problems that have left me drained emotionally, since I depend highly on my eyesight for the work I do.  I have finally, after 4 months, learned to accept my limited vision which varies daily, but it's put a lot of stress on everyone around me, since I can get a wee bit impatient sometimes!

I think my biggest fear tomorrow is ... the surgeon is performing surgery at the local hospital here in Cornwall rather than in his office (where my original surgery was done privately).  In the past (see my post of how my blood sugars over a 6 hour surgery caused DKA HERE), staff do not have much knowledge of Type 1 diabetics or the devices we use to stay healthy and out of overcrowded ER's!  It'll be interesting to see how things go with my wearing the Omnipod, and whether the PDM device also will be allowed in the OR ... along with the Dexcom CGMS.  If I was able to have my DH in the OR, or someone who has knowledge of what to do incase of alarms ... I would be more at ease. 

So, hopefully the next time you see a blog post or post on Facebook ...  I'll be more perky ... and I'll be able to perform my job that has been sadly sacrificed due to limited vision (my work requires good eyesight).  Though if I have to only have vision in one eye - I'm sure I'd be rocking a eyepatch that is out of sight!

Handmade eye patch from https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/iPatching



Saturday, November 25, 2017

Life as a Podder

Okay – well at least for a month – I’m being a Podder … and for those of you who are wondering … WTF is she talking about ??? ....   I’m using what is referred to as a “tubeless pump” for pumping insulin through my body 24/7 called the Omnipod.  A plastic mini-me type of insulin pump is replaced every 3 days on your skin (if you’re lucky enough to not have it fail as you’ll see below).  


I’m now approaching my 2nd week as a Podder and the notes I’ve made up so far on how it has been going will hopefully help any Canadian on the fence post as to which of the 2 current pump manufacturers we have as an option with Animas exiting the pump market (NB – you can still use your current Animas pump – get supplies well into 2019 – so do not think you have to jump ship just yet – it’s just you’ll be buying your supplies from Medtronic eventually once Animas closes up shop – sigh).

As far as purchasing Omnipod supplies, especially if you are one of the Canadian provinces that have a pump program, the price tag of $300/month for the pods will go over and beyond what you might be paying for a tubing pump.  For some, that can be a deal breaker, especially if you do NOT have private insurance/work insurance.  In Canada, you also have to buy the pods directly from Diabetes Express .

My first few pods I used before the meet up with the rep from Omnipod were from a former Podder who for one reason or another, decided to go with a tube pump.  The funny thing, was the pods I used from them are newer, but they are the ones that I had problems with.  The 1st one alarmed with “OCCLUSION” about 2 hours before the Pod would shut down for a new one to be installed.  The 2nd pod, after 1 ½ days, just “FAILED”.  I went through the steps to get it to work again, and after a few futile attempts, had to remove the pod, losing about 50 units of NovoRapid.  I was NOT to happy with that since I have no insurance anymore, but I just told myself, this is an EXPERIMENT.
After that, I started to use the pods that the Omnipod rep had given me (and these are older manufactured ones than what my friend had donated to me).  So far, with only filling the pods up with the minimum amount of insulin ... NO PROBLEMS to report to date!!! 


Now for my beefs (isn't that a cute cow or what?) with the Omnipod so far, is the PDM (Personal Diabetic Manager) – which serves as your blood meter as well as for bolusing for meals and/or corrections … and setting up the programming for your pod on your body.  It’s abit dated due to not touch screen and it’s so bloody big!!!  I still keep on occasionally reaching for my waistline where I used to clip my Animas Vibe, to  bolus, etc. – then having to remember where I left the PDM (I now have a system - which works most of the time - yes - you can teach a cat new tricks)!   I also find it takes longer to punch in everything into the PDM to get my juice of life infused into me for a meal and/or correction (though I'm getting faster now - but I find more thinking is required than my Animas Vibe).  If you do misplace the PDM, the pod will continue to disperse basal insulin, nothing else, but f the pod starts to alarm, and you don’t have your PDM on you, you have no idea what it’s alarming for.  NB Rep did give me a belt clip case for the PDM, but it’s kind of useless since you still require the test strip container and finger pricker – and there’s no room for either of these.  So I am designing a little wristlet to fit everything in (yes .. I am such a Fashionista).

Always, always have a spare pod, insulin, gunk remover, alcohol etc. on hand.  I know people who inject, or use tube pumps are always ... ALWAYS ... supposed to have those with them every time they leave the house.  In the case of the Omnipod, if it starts screaming, and it can't be resolved with following instructions on PDM, you will have to remove and put a new pod in place (tip - always have an opened paper clip to mute the bloody thing - been there done that - and it is all in the very detailed instruction manual supplied with the PDM).  So, with an tube insulin pump, if you're a 15 minute drive away, and haven't got supplies, it's abit less stressful and not go bonky with a screaming pod. 

One of my other concerns originally with Omnipod was the large amount of adhesive along with the 60 degree 6.5 mm cannula.  I’ve not had much luck with plastic cannulas over the last 8 years of pumping with Animas, so stainless steel 90 degree sets are what I’ve always used, and when removing the sets, you would never know I had been infusing insulin, along with no skin irritation from the adhesive.  So my other beef is, where my insulin has infused the cannula … there’s a hard small lump underneath the skin.  I never had this with the Animas sets, so have been closely watching how the area heals (so far it seems it may take 2 weeks for the lumps to go away).  I was wondering how people who are insulin resistant – and take more than my normal 2-4 units each time for a bolus or correction  - if they experience this - and how long it takes to heal.


Now for bonuses of being on the Omnipod !  I feel quite free without any tubing (oohhh cannot wait for a romantic weekend with the hubby).  Oh, and last weekend I went thrift shopping, and usually when trying on clothing, it takes forever with unclipping pump, etc.  With no pump clipped on me, or bulk of pump … badda bing badda boom … I feel like a fashionista again … though … damn … where did some of those extra rolls of fat come from ? <lol>

There is less waste of insulin, that's if the pod doesn’t fail!  Usually with tube pumps, we have to fill our tubing, which we can’t reuse again (some do, but I wouldn’t recommend it).  So, on average, I’d lose about 10 units of insulin.  With the pod, filling it up to exactly to 3 days worth of insulin, I’m seeing about 2-6 units wasted.  NB:  I have been using Fiasp a few times for last minute meals via MDI, or a correction over 12 mmol/l (very rare these days) – so in reality – I might have run out of insulin before the 3 days is up.

One caveat is the Eco-pod Disposal Kit available free of charge from Diabetes Express.  I hate the amount of garbage that our gadgets we use for health creates on our big blue marble.  According to my rep, some items can be recycled.  I hope so!

The other great bonus though?  It uses FreeStyle test strips – yippee – small droplet of blood – more accuracy!  I sadly am almost out of the strips I was given, so back  to use my One Touch since I have lots of those test strips.  

So, that’s about it in a nutshell - I'll carry on testing it out until the last pod is used up, and decide from there ... should I stay or should I go ... back to Animas or just MDI.  If you’ve not caught my posts on Instagram and/or Facebook you’ll be able to see some extra pictures and discussions.


Sunday, October 8, 2017

My trial with Fiasp

With the advent of FIASP now coming to the United States, I thought I'd finally get around to doing my much promised write up on how my trial with FIASP went earlier this year.  If you can't wade through my words here ... just go to "Dr. Google" and type in "FIASP review" and you'll get lots of hits from various bloggers around the globe - some engineeringly intense- and some - like mine - less so.  Again, remember, what I write here ... does not mean it will be the same for you.  Our bodies are all different as to how it will react.



I went against my endocrinologists wishes.  She felt that because of no medical proof/research showing that it works in an insulin pump (I'm presently on the soon to be dinosaur Animas Vibe ... sigh) that she doesn't recommend it.  I'm such a #diabadass, and off to my favourite pharmacy here in Canada, and viola, a freshly squeeze vial of our juice of life called Fiasp ... with a touch of Vitamin B3 (niacinamide) to increase the speed of absorption, along with a naturally occurring Amino Acid (L-Arginine) for stability.  These last two additions are what make Fisap work supposably much faster to absorb.  It's like they're describing a fine bottle of Chianti, maybe with some fava beans ?

My experiment involved for 2 weeks, keeping my insulin pump filled with NovoRapid purely for the basal portion of my insulin regime.  For meal times, and corrections, I injected Fiasp according to my blood sugar results.  Taking the injection a few minutes before a meal resulted in hardly any spike at all, e.g. I tested a 5 mmol/l ... 2 hours later 8 mmol/l .  I didn't eat any differently when I ate, I just did my usual thing as a semi-low carb eater (I try to stay under 150 grams of carbs a day which according to my medical team ... is not enough ... but that's the way I've always eaten).

Testing it out 20 minutes later resulted in various results, rarely did I go over my zone of 10 mmol/l after eating.  As well, it all depends on how accurate you are with figuring out carbs for that yummy dessert you decide to have later.



Correcting via injection with Fiasp went well if I had to, but I found it very rare that I went crazy high, unless, again, I didn't calculate the insulin to carb ratio (I:C).  We have to be precise in our calculations in order to stay within the range we want to be in, without sacrificing ourselves to either a low blood sugar or high blood sugar.  At times when you think about it, diabetes can be a game of chance like at a casino of rolling the dice !

Next came a 2 week session with having Fiasp in my insulin pump, so both basal and bolus were taken care of it.  Testing it out the same way, the results were no different than just using NovoRapid.  The other problem I had with the Fiasp was when removing the infusion set after 3 days, the puncture point of the Contact D set was red and irritated.  I'm thinking it maybe due to the additive, not sure.  Also, there was stinging at times with infusing insulin, but not often.

I keep on wondering if the reason it didn't work as well for me in my insulin pump was due to the insulin not being "fresh", which it is when drawn up by syringe each time.  Hard to say.

One thing before I forget, I tend to do something I've learned from the Diabetes Online Community (#DOC) that my endocrinologist and her team chastise me about. That's the intramuscular shot (IM) of rapid insulin to lower a high blood sugar (for me this is only done when in the 20 mmol/l range).  I do it in the upper muscle of my shoulder, and based on my Insulin Sensitivity Factor (ISF), I am usually in range within an hour or two.  Because the pump with Fiasp didn't do as well, I did hit a few above 20's ... and found that Fiasp via syringe worked the same.  No sudden drastic drop into no-no-land which is what I have been warned about over and over again from my medical team.

So, that's it, in a nutshell, how my little trial went.  It's worth giving it a go, if the vials aren't too expensive (here in Canada I can get a vial for $35 ... or 5-pack of penfills are $72 ... I have no insurance ... so according to my "legal drugs dealer" aka pharmacist ... I'd be paying about $10 more if I had insurance (urrrhhhh).  Both my pharmacist and myself are curious to see what Americans pay out of pocket for Fiasp - so if you do look past your co-pay - and do question why you pay such and such for a drug ... great ... let me know.


!!! WAIT - WAIT - WAIT - I'M NOT FINISHED !!!

Since this experiment with Fiasp - I have found that with NovoRapid in my insulin pump ... in order to NOT have spikes ... waiting almost an hour for the insulin to start doing its "thing" ... rather than 20 minutes which is usually recommended for most of us ... gives me much better results.  Therefore, I may give Fiasp another go and try different waiting time before eating.  Also, with contemplating what insulin pump to go on due to Animas Canada pulling out of the pump business and my dislike for the company that has said they'd replace our pumps with theirs - I'm on the fence post about continuing with an insulin pump.  I was injecting for 40+ years before going onto a pump, and can if I have to, go back hopefully with Tresiba being introduced in Canada this month as another long lasting insulin (and that'll make another blog post one day in the near future).

Monday, October 2, 2017

I've Got My Eyes On You

Before I go on ... all I can say is #prayersforlasvegas ... words cannot describe my feelings of what happened in Las Vegas Sunday night. 


Last Friday night, one of my neighbours commented that my inner eyeball looked red.  It felt abit hot and itchy (I'm still not sure if I maybe had scratched it earlier, but since being told women are the worst out of the sexes to have eye irritations due to rubbing their eyes, I now am vigilant to NOT rub) .  If you think this is all poppy cock ... go check out this link to learn how dangerous it can be!

When I was washing my face later at night as I prepared for zzzzz time I saw how the blood vessels had broken in the corner of my eye.  Pretty ugly to say the least, but it was when I opened my eye up wide, I discovered what looked like a clump of cottage cheese.  Of course, I freaked out, when after washing my hands carefully, I couldn't dislodge it.  When my DH eventually heard me, he tried with a Q-tip.  No luck.  So, off to ER at Cornwall Community Hospital (CCH) we went.

Three hours later ... it was mutually decided to not remove it (the on call doctor said he could but to me that's like having a dentist do plastic surgery).  My ophthalmologist luckily was on call that weekend so he would be contacted the next day.  Main thing, they determined it was nothing serious and to use lubricating drops every hour.  I felt abit stupid going to ER, but they've told me that I did the right thing, especially being a Type 1 diabetic.  The fear of losing my our sight is always in the back of our minds, or it is for me!

So fast forward to Monday, which is today.  Took a cool stroll into downtown, and discovered that what the white clump is all to do with is the "Dropless/No Drops Long Acting Meds" that you see in the bill below when I had double cataract surgery performed at the end of July.  It will dissolve in time, and as the surgeon said, it lasts a long time.  I went this route rather than drops due to already having enough to remember about with diabetes and other meds I take.  This way, bing ... it's done ... though as he explained ... he thinks he should now maybe warn his patients about what may occur.

If you notice below, in the bill ... I went private due to feeling unsure about how I'd be treated at the CCH as a Type 1 diabetic wearing an insulin pump and CGM.  Also, any laser correction required for follow up to lens implant, is covered with this charge (this is where I'm abit puzzled, if I'd gone public, then I'd be paying for this???).  Laser has been performed once to remove cloudiness on the implanted lenses, called posterior capsule opacification (PCO) and is often more common in younger cataract patients - so that must mean I'm not an old fart <lol>.  Laser will probably be performed again to hopefully correct my other eye that surgeon had difficulty placing lens into the vitreous so it's sitting more securely (that eye had the bigger cataract .. my buggered up eye in this blog had just a itsy bitsy one starting).  Today, he also talked of removing that lens and suturing a new one in place rather than compromising my thinning vitreous.  The things I learned today when he was open and honest with both myself and my husband.


From a personal point of view, which is why I haven't written in awhile ... I wish I had never had the cataract surgery and saved the $3K for something else (wine, holiday, yadda, yadda).  I also wish I had not gone with having BOTH eyes done.  I only had a small cataract starting in the other eye (the eye that you see here in this post) ... the other one was supposedly larger.  I miss my glasses (have been wearing them since Grade 5), and during this process of recovery, miss having good vision.  My vision was never that bad even with needing extra light once in awhile due to the larger cataract, plus I only wore glasses for driving since my eyesight had been improving over the years believe it or not.  Now, both distance and close up ... are buggered up - I have my good days of seeing semi-clear ... and bad days where I frustrate myself and my husband to no end when I'm trying to read a recipe or magazine (I do not read as much or watch TV now that often - which I miss so much).  Again, I keep on telling myself it's still early days as other cataract patients (thanks Dad) have told me as well as my surgeon.
The only thing I can leave you with, if you are like myself, having doubts about going for cataract surgery along with the promise from your ophthalmologist of having perfect vision (which most times does happen ... along with not wearing glasses if you dislike wearing them).  DO YOUR RESEARCH ... this is coming from someone who researches diligently when creating a blog like this and didn't for her own health. I sadly, did not, and only saw afterwards a statement at the RNIB (see below) that if your vision is NOT helped by changing your lenses, then having cataract surgery is probably your best option.

If you need more help in understanding about cataracts, I highly recommend the Royal Institute of Blind People based in the UK ... it has amazing information ... written in easy to understand terms ... you can find a downloadable .pdf file at this website link.  If you're wondering about complications like I've just had with this surgery, check out All About Vision at this website link.



NB: the wait time for cataract surgery varies from province to province in Canada.  I was told if I'd not gone private that it would not be performed until 6 months later.  If you're Canadian and reading this, you maybe able to find a similar link like this one for Ontario wait times


Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Drooling acidity as a diabetic

The first thing that came to my mind as I was trying to figure out what title to give this post was ...  yeah, that drooling alien that makes you just want to hug it and bring it home to meet your Mum.


Picture from Geek

Today, I went to have my fangs scaled.  Something I'm doing now in between the once a year cleaning.  As of September, this will no longer be covered since medical insurance that we've had through my husbands work place ... stops.  No more, 80% payout for anything we have performed that isn't covered by the provincial healthcare (optometrists, eye ware, dental, specialist services).  So, of course, I'm stressed out (and maybe my Dad is right, my recent ocular rosacea flare up that sent me to ER since my regular eye doctors were both on holidays and their answering machines said ... take thyself to the ER ... which I did).

It didn't help that I was having a low about an hour before hand, and as I was telling this to the Stephanie, my dental hygienist, that I was okay at 4.1 (yes, yes, yes, I know, I was below 5 - but sometimes we break our own rules that we try to get others to follow - don't shoot the messenger).  Oh darn, I'm just realising as I write this, that I was supposed to contact the dental office that I arrived home safe .... uhmm ... that was like 4 hours ago.



Stephanie went off to my dentist, and they both came back to my chair to make sure I was okay for this small procedure.  If it hadn't been myself in the chair, Dr. Chadwick said if it was anyone else, she would have rescheduled.  So, we proceeded while I suspended Big Blue, my Animas Vibe (and the CGM was way off with saying I was 2.8 mmol/l when I was actually at 4.1 mmol/l ).

So, the point of this long winded story?  Here I was thinking, since I am known by many of my dentists over the year as the "Drool Queen" that this was a good thing.  It is ... and it isn't.  It's better to not have a dry mouth as this can cause problems.  In my case, Stephanie went on to say that with being a Type 1 diabetic, we tend to have acid saliva which causes tartar build up.  It doesn't help as she explained that when we have a low blood sugar we are eating sugar.

At that point, I told her that I after eating foods containing sugar when I have a low blood sugar, I tend to rinse my mouth with water, and eat either a few nuts or cheese to offset the evils of the sugar decaying on my teeth.  While it is good, what she suggested next for future use after eating a meal is something I wish I'd known about before!

You know how we've all been told to brush our teeth after eating?  Well, again, it's 50/50 sorta good.  Because we have such acid saliva, and because the majority of the foods we eat (yes, eating healthy foods like fruits, vegetables have/create acid in the mouth) ... that if you go to brush your teeth after eating a meal ... you are only pushing the acid further into your gums.



Her tip?  Before brushing your teeth, always rinse your mouth out with mouthwash BEFORE ... not afterwards.

So, here's my take on the whole thing ... that I will retain in my sponge brain for future, and maybe you will too, since as we all known healthy teeth and gums as a diabetic are important, and many people overlook this thinking

If need be (and do this on a daily basis anyways before bed), after your meal, FLOSS your teeth to remove any food debris stuck in between your teeth.   RINSE thoroughly with WATER to remove any dislodged particles.   GARGLE mouthwash for 30-60 seconds, then SPIT out.   Then without rinsing again,   BRUSH  your teeth for 2-3 minutes with a toothbrush, being sure to follow the correct brushing procedure shown to you by your dentist and/or hygienist.