By Amena Rasti
As the deadly coronavirus pandemic is a novel or new virus, its vaccine has not been formulated yet. Hence nobody has built up a perfect immune system for it, meaning the virus can target anybody irrespective of age, gender and other factors.
We can see that most of the cases of coronavirus are mild, but there are a few underlying conditions which make people catch the virus faster and others that make it severe. Recent studies suggests that people who have weak immune systems are more susceptible to become the target. Patients who are undergoing cancer treatment, people being treated for various autoimmune diseases, those having an organ transplant, those having cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease ares more likely to develop this serious illness.
However, a report from the World Health Organisation which studied cases in China, said that a few conditions which put people at the highest risk of severe disease are:
1.Hypertension (high blood pressure),
4.Chronic respiratory disease (such as lung disease or asthma)
"If a person is having diabetes, then he or she is at an increased risk of severity when to do contract the novel coronavirus (COVID-19)," says Dr. Qadeera Rasti Baghban, Pediatrician at Vikram Hospital and Director of Rea’s Health Care and Charitable Trust for diabetic patients, Bengaluru.
The world reported a total of 3,75,498 confirmed cases and 16,362 fatalities so far. The pandemic reached to 196 countries across the globe.
It's spread and symptoms:
The COVID-19 virus spreads primarily through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness which can be cured on treatment while in the serious cases people may be affected with pnemonia and multi-organ failure. Symptoms like fever,cough,shortness of breath, muscle pain, diarrhea, and sore throat will be experienced.
What is Type 1 Diabetes?
Diabetes is a disease that occurs when the glucose or sugar levels in your body are not in a balanced level or they are too high. Blood glucose is your main source of energy and comes from the food you eat. Insulin, a hormone made by the pancreas, helps glucose from food get into your cells to be used as energy. Sometimes your body doesn’t make enough insulin or doesn’t use the produced insulin to do its job. Glucose then stays in your blood and doesn’t reach your cells.
How risky is your body for COVID-19 if you are a diabetic patient?
At present we all are living in unprecedented times and might be rightfully concerned with how will you manage yourself and your loved one’s with diabetes during the pandemic phase of COVID-19. As COVID-19 being a communicable disease, the foremost thing to do would be social-distancing which reduces exposure bringing down the risk of contraction.
Being a diabetic, managing blood sugars and simultaneously being conscious of being at high risk over the exposure with covid-19 would be absolute big task, but still it is easy for any of them with diabetes to follow the simple steps and be more prepared.
Why there is more risk especially for people with diabetes to acquire any kind of infection?
"Diabetes is an autoimmune disordeR which lowers your immunity especially when you have uncontrolled blood sugar levels making body more vulnerable to infections to sustain in the body, which proportionally causes rise in blood sugars", says Dr.Qadeera.
Here are few simple precautionary steps advised by her to avoid the infection if you or your loved one is a diabetic patient!
1) If any symptoms of covid-19 or any exposure history with covid
patients ,kindly inform your healthcare professional
2) Stalk up your insulins at home for atleast 2 weeks
3) Maintain good glycemic control, eat healthy with proper
carbohydrate counting with frequent blood sugar checks
4) Regularly exercise at home
5) Maintain Good hand hygiene
6) Get flu and pneumonia vaccination – especially the later one
protects you from secondary bacterial pneumonia during any
respiratory viral infection
7) Follow sick day rule if sick – which would include maintaining hydration , frequent blood sugar checks, temperature monitoring , ketone bodies monitoring , it is most important to keep your healthcare
"Its not about being anxious, but safe", concludes Dr. Qadeera Rasti