Nursing Interventions Diabetes
Diabetes mellitus is a chronic disease that results from a failure of the pancreas to produce enough insulin, or body cells’ inability to use insulin effectively. The term “diabetes”, which literally means “a siphon,” was inspired by the belief that diabetes was caused by an abnormal leakage of urine into the blood.
Nursing Interventions for Diabetes
Nurses can assist patients with diabetes in the following ways:
- Diet. Nurses should work with patients to develop a healthy diet and a plan for maintaining it. They can also provide education about eating choices, types of foods to eat, and beverages to avoid or limit.
- Exercise. Nurses should encourage exercise as part of the treatment for diabetes, especially for patients who are overweight or obese.
- Medication management. The nurse plays an important role in medication management because he or she often works closely with other healthcare providers who prescribe medications and monitor their effectiveness. Nurses also educate patients on how to manage their medications properly at home and what side effects they might experience while taking them over time (Korner-Bitensky & Snyder 2008).
- Self-care skills training such as foot care (skin care), eye exams; monitoring blood glucose levels using meters; applying dressings/bandages if needed; managing wounds/ulcers properly etc., which help decrease morbidity due to complications associated with this disease (Korner-Bitensky & Snyder 2008)
Knowledge deficit related to disease process and complications
It is important to assess the patient’s knowledge of the disease process and its complications, as well as their understanding of their treatment. The patient’s understanding should cover all aspects of this, including:
- The disease process
- Their own symptoms and signs
- Likely complications
- Treatment options (including side effects)
It is also useful to assess their perception of their prognosis.
Activity intolerance related to fatigue, weakness, and possible altered metabolism
- Fatigue, weakness, and possible altered metabolism
- Complications from diabetes can lead to other health conditions that cause exhaustion and make everyday activities more difficult. These include:
- Poor circulation in the feet or legs due to nerve damage (peripheral neuropathy)
- High blood pressure (hypertension) that damages blood vessels in the eyes, kidneys, heart, and brain
- Heart disease with high cholesterol levels or blocked arteries (atherosclerosis), which may cause chest pain when exercising
Altered nutrition: less than body requirements related to carbohydrate, fat, and protein metabolism changes, causing polyphagia/polydipsia, polyuria, weight loss/gain
- Altered nutrition: less than body requirements related to carbohydrate, fat, and protein metabolism changes, causing polyphagia/polydipsia, polyuria, weight loss/gain
- Causes of altered nutrition include the following:
- Fatigue and weakness (may be severe)
- Polyphagia/polydipsia (excessive hunger or thirst)
- Polyuria (excessive urination)
Altered tissue perfusion related to hyperglycemia, ketoacidosis, or dehydration that can lead to neuropathies in extremities or altered respiratory function
- Altered tissue perfusion related to hyperglycemia, ketoacidosis, or dehydration that can lead to neuropathies in extremities or altered respiratory function
Diabetes may result in decreased blood flow to the extremities and other organs resulting in neuropathy or organ dysfunction. This is called altered tissue perfusion. The complications of diabetes include the following:
- Hypoglycemia can lead to altered tissue perfusion.
- Ketoacidosis can lead to altered tissue perfusion (e.g., decreased cardiac output).
- Dehydration can lead to altered tissue perfusion (e.g., decreased cardiac output).
These are some interventions nurses could use when working with patients with diabetes.
- Education The nurse should provide the patient with all of the necessary information regarding diabetes, including diet and exercise schedules, medication requirements, and any side effects that may occur.
- Monitoring blood glucose levels The nurse will monitor this in order to ensure that it stays within acceptable levels by giving patients their medications as directed and encouraging them to follow a proper diet.
- Blood glucose monitoring This is used to keep track of the patient’s blood sugar levels at regular intervals throughout each day.
- Diet and exercise These two things are very important for those with diabetes because they can help lower or control glucose levels in the body without medication (or in addition). A change in diet might include eating foods high in fiber and whole grains; reducing fat intake; limiting sugars; avoiding junk food/high-calorie drinks/fried foods/candy etc., eating smaller portions more often throughout the day rather than one large meal per day (which can cause spikes); drinking plenty of water instead of sugary sodas or juice drinks which contain high amounts of sugar; avoiding alcohol when possible due to its effects on carbohydrate metabolism (this includes beer). Exercise may be required depending on how active someone is before being diagnosed with this condition but there are many ways you can incorporate activity into your daily routine such as taking short walks around your neighborhood everyday after work instead driving home––these small changes add up over time!
The nurse’s primary responsibility is to ensure that the patient receives adequate nutrition and fluids in order to maintain health and promote healing. There are many interventions available to assist you with this task, but remember that these patients need your support more than ever before. It is crucial to stay informed about new developments in diabetes care so that when something happens or changes with one of your patients, you have a plan ready.