If you or a senior member of your family have recently been diagnosed with diabetes, you might be confused about the right path when it comes to managing and controlling the disease. Diabetes is a common diagnosis for senior citizens; 25 percent of people over 60 are currently living with the disease. When it is not managed properly, it can be a dangerous condition associated with many health issues, such as eye and kidney damage, and an increased risk of strokes and heart disease.
Managing a diagnosis of diabetes can be daunting, but a customized plan of education, diet, and medical care can reduce symptoms while helping to prevent associated conditions and complications. Lifestyle changes, special diets, and regular blood glucose monitoring can make keep the disease from affecting your quality of life.
Fortunately, there is a licensed Orange County / Long Beach home care organization that offers an excellent selection of professional in-home caregivers who can help you understand medications, make healthy diet decisions to control blood sugar levels, and integrate gentle exercise into your daily routine.
Learning to how to live with diabetes can be difficult for seniors to work into their routines, though a proactive, preventative plan can make any apprehension disappear. There are many resources available in your community to help you learn about diabetes, treat the condition, and prevent complications.
Below, we have provided five of the best programs available for seniors living near the Orange County/Long Beach area.
Long Beach Health & Human Services Diabetes Prevention and Management Program
This free program provided by the City of Long Beach offers this six-week course to help people manage and prevent diabetes symptoms. Participants work with instructors to develop a personalized support program, learning the basics of self-care, diet and nutrition, blood glucose monitoring, and the importance of exercise in managing their disease. The course is open to patients, care providers, pre-diabetics, professionals, and anyone in the community who would like to better understand this complex illness. Courses are also available for Spanish-speaking participants.
Diabetes Events and Education at Long Beach Memorial
The MemorialCare Health System offers activities and education for people living with diabetes and those who are prediabetic. Classes include Diabetes Self-Management Education Programs, and Discovering & Dealing with Diabetes, and are offered in both English and Spanish. They also offer family-friendly events to raise awareness and educate the public on the risk factors and symptoms of diabetes. For more information about events or classes, call (562) 933-5043.
St. Mary Medical Center Ongoing Diabetes Education Program
Available as group or individual sessions, St. Mary Medical Center provides the community with comprehensive diabetes education through their Diabetes Self-Management Education classes. These sessions are open by appointment only and offer Spanish and Cambodian language services. Certified Diabetic Educators will work with you or your senior family member to learn how to manage diabetes and maintain a healthy glycemic index through blood glucose monitoring, medication, and a healthy diet optimized for the needs of people with diabetes.
The YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program
If you or your senior relative are prediabetic or at risk of developing the disease, your local YMCA offers a comprehensive Diabetes Prevention Program. Their team of health and wellness experts will help you or your senior family member better understand symptoms and risk factors, learn how to prevent the disease by changing their diet and lifestyle, and incorporate physical activity into their routines. This 12-month program includes a four-month membership at The Y, which offers access to any Los Angeles metropolitan area YMCA facility. Though the program is not free, it is covered by most insurance plans and scholarships are available if your insurance provider will not cover the cost.
Your local YMCA also offers many fitness classes which are appropriate for seniors. The Active Older Adult program is designed for seniors 50 and up, and helps older bodies stay fit, healthy, and active. It is also an easy way to make new friends and build community, as there is a profoundly social atmosphere in all class sessions.
Aqua Fit Aerobics is a gentle, effective pool-based exercise program that can help seniors manage their weight. This course is offered at any location with a pool and has several time slots available each week. Finally, many YMCA locations offer seated aerobics classes and healthy eating programs designed with seniors in mind. Your local YMCA is staffed with caring fitness professionals who are happy to work with you or your senior family member to establish a fitness and dietary routine that supports the needs of their condition. For more information about fitness, nutrition and lifestyle programs designed for older adults and seniors living with diabetes, please contact the local YMCA.
Healthy West Orange Diabetes Prevention Class
This 16-week prevention course is offered by Healthy West Orange and is available to anyone with a diagnosis of prediabetes or family history of diabetes. Focusing on diabetes prevention, this course explores the benefits of healthy eating in conjunction with weight management to halt or reverse pre-diabetic symptoms.The course is followed by regular maintenance sessions to help keep you on track. If you or a senior family member has a diagnosis of pre-diabetes, this class is a must.
By taking advantage of local resources, a diagnosis of diabetes or prediabetes can easy to manage. Fortunately, the Orange County/Long Beach area has many caring professionals who can help you understand the condition and how to prevent complications. Through controlling blood sugar levels, managing weight and making healthy diet decisions, seniors with diabetes can live full and happy lives. If you or a senior family member have been recently diagnosed with diabetes, the time to take control of your disease is now.