Sick Day Guidelines

When you are sick with a cold, flu, or any type of illness, your blood sugar will likely rise above your target range. On these days, it is more important than ever to take care of your diabetes by doing the following:

  1. Check your blood sugar every 4-6 hours and keep a record of these results.
  2. If you have type 1 diabetes, check your blood or urine ketones every 4-6 hours.
  3. Keep taking your insulin or oral diabetes medications. If you are vomiting, do not take your oral medications. If you take insulin, don’t stop taking it, however you may need to adjust your dosage.
  4. Try your best to follow your meal plan.
    • Drink plenty of water or sugar free liquids (at least 8 oz. every hour).
    • Try things like crackers, jello, broth, popsicles or applesauce if you can’t eat solid foods.
    • If you can not keep food down, you will need to drink liquids with sugar in it. Try ginger ale, fruit juice or sports drinks. Remember, we need carbohydrates for energy.
  5. Don’t hesitate to ask friends or family for help. You need rest while you are sick. Make sure these family members know the signs of hypoglycemia.
  6. Call your doctor if you experience any of the following:
    • Your blood sugar stays over 300 or under 70.
    • You have a fever or 100.4 or higher.
    • You can’t keep liquids down for more than 4 hours.
    • You have vomiting and diarrhea for more than 6 hours.
    • You have trouble breathing.
    • You are very drowsy and can’t think clearly.