In the next 6 months, the Indian government expects a majority of its 1.36 billion people to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Amongst them, at least 77 million people live with diabetes. Taking these statistics into account, it is important that we take a look at the emerging information about COVID-19, its vaccines and their interactions with diabetes and its treatments.
Even as the COVID-19 virus continues to change and adapt to new challenges, it is important to learn as much as possible about it. Currently, the vaccines developed in India, which are currently being administered to frontline workers are the best bet to stay safe from COVID-19. When paired with the right disease management practices, this vaccine can aid diabetes patients in continuing to stay healthy and safe.
The Need for Tracking and Effective Disease Management
At this juncture, it is established knowledge that diabetes doesn’t make a patient more susceptible to contracting the COVID-19 virus. But rather, the infection poses higher chances of complications. Our previous post on the same topic discussed the need for chronic disease management, especially by making use of constant tracking.
If you are infected with COVID-19, it becomes especially important to keep a close eye on the vitals to prevent diabetes complications. The major complications to expect include diabetic ketoacidosis, and severe hypoglycemia. But the chances for experiencing these are dependant on how well your diabetes is managed and how severe your COVID-19 infection is.
Diabetes and the Covid-19 Vaccine: What Should a Patient Do?
As we all keep hearing on a daily basis, the available vaccines have brought a new ray of hope to all of us. As a diabetes patient, there are things that you ought to keep in mind when seeking out the vaccine.
While it is still not easily accessible to the public, it is on its way. According to the business standard, patients with chronic ailments like diabetes and hypertension will be vaccinated on priority in India.
The approved vaccines in India are the AstraZeneca Oxford developed Covishield manufacture in Serum Institue, Pune and the Covaxin, jointly developed by Bharath Biotech, and ICMR. Currently, only the frontline workers have been administered the vaccine shots. When it is rolled out to the general public, about 270 million people above the age of 50, and those with comorbidities will be first to receive.
According to the information available, both vaccines are safe and effective for people with diabetes. But since the vaccine cause symptoms of COVID-19 in the first few days, it is important to carefully monitor your blood sugar levels after getting vaccinated, and you may also have to adjust your insulin dosage accordingly.
Another major concern for Diabetes patients is the interaction between the constituents of the vaccine and diabetes medications. Currently, there are no anticipated interactions in this regard.
But it is important to give yourself some time after getting vaccinated to take rest, hydrate, and closely monitor your wellbeing. Since the vaccine can mimic symptoms of COVID-19, expect to feel fever and excessive tiredness.
As we near one year of the COVID-19 lockdown in India, most people have become accustomed to the new normal. But it important that everyone continues to take their health seriously, even with the vaccines being rolled out. Especially for those living with diabetes, it is necessary to stay informed, to constantly monitor your vitals, and to stay continuously in touch with your doctor.
Even though the vaccine can make life easier, you will have to closely monitor yourself after you do get vaccinated. After being administered, it can mimic COVID-19 symptoms, as well as temporarily affect your blood sugar levels. Staying aware of these, and ensuring that you take active charge of your health can go a long way.
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