I think we all know on here that T1 is a very difficult condition to manage. Between testing, bolusing, counting carbs, eating, re-testing, infusion set changes, refilling prescriptions, etc, management of T1 can consume the better part of one’s life, especially if someone is managing things properly. There are many curve balls that can affect control, but I want to focus on one that has been particularly hard for me lately - that’s stress.
When I say “stress,” I’m talking about that adreneline-filled, chest-tightening feeling you get when you’re overwhelmed at work or in life. It’s the stress that some people may even refer to as anxiety.
Lately, stress has really been wreaking havoc on my blood sugars. I have what I generally think of as a low-stress job. Nothing too demanding, but we have our moments. Well, we happen to be having one of those moments now. We are working on something really fast-paced. The team is large, there’s lots to do, and I feel like things are moving 60 miles per minute. And this has killed my streak of good control. But it’s an awesome and exciting work opportunity.
I woke up today with a nice 101, a surprise considering I had a crappy night’s sleep. We recently increased my overnight basal rates and this has been working well for me. I was pleased. I bolused, ate my usual breakfast, and was 105 about 90 minutes later. Sweet.
I was working on something with a colleague that involved a long phone conversation this morning, another cup of coffee (shouldn’t have done that, even though I did bolus my usual 0.3 units to avoid my coffee spike), and way too much stressing about our tight deadline. That chest tightness, that vague headache, both crept in and suddenly I realized I didn’t feel so well. I checked my BG before eating lunch and it was 289!! Seriously?? What the fructose?!?!?
This is what stress does to me. It makes my blood sugar shoot up and, sometimes, it takes a while to come back down. I have since corrected with a mega-bolus and am (hopefully) heading downwards. This is something that I’ve never really been good at managing. I need to learn some relaxation techniques or something, because letting stress get to me like this is probably frying my internal organs. And, of course, it makes me feel guilty that I’m “allowing” this to happen, which in turn stresses me out even more.
How do folks deal with this?