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Flu with Diabetes : How to Protect and Getting Cured this Season?

Flu with diabetes

Even when well-managed, people with diabetes (type 1, type 2, or gestational) are at an increased risk of experiencing serious flu complications, which can end in hospitalization and, in some cases, death.

Flu-related problems include pneumonia, bronchitis, sinus infections, and ear infections. Diabetes was found in over 30% of individuals hospitalized with flu in recent seasons, according to the CDC.

Flu can also exacerbate chronic (long-term) health problems such as diabetes by impairing the immune system’s ability to fight infections. Furthermore, acute diseases such as the flu might make controlling your blood sugar levels more difficult.

The flu may raise your blood sugar levels, but occasionally people don’t feel like eating when they’re sick, and a lack of appetite can cause blood sugar levels to drop. If a diabetic becomes ill, they must adhere to the sick day rules.

Symptoms of the Flu

Influenza (flu) can cause mild to severe disease and, in some cases, death. The flu is not the same as a cold. Flu frequently strikes without warning. Flu patients frequently experience any or all of the following symptoms:

  • Fever or feeling feverish/chills
  • Coughing,
  • Cough,
  • Sore throat,
  • Runny or stuffy nose,
  • Muscle or body aches,
  • Headaches
  • Tiredness

Some people may experience vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than in adults.

Complications of the Flu

The majority of individuals who get the flu recover in a few days to less than two weeks, but some people suffer complications (such as pneumonia) as a result of the flu, some of which can be life-threatening and result in death.

Sinus and ear infections are examples of mild flu consequences, but pneumonia is a major flu complication that can arise from flu virus infection alone or flu virus and bacteria co-infection. 

Other dangerous flu consequences include inflammation of the heart (myocarditis), brain (encephalitis), or muscular tissues (myositis, rhabdomyolysis), as well as multi-organ failure (for example, respiratory and kidney failure).

Infection with the flu virus of the respiratory tract can cause a severe inflammatory reaction in the body, leading to sepsis, the body’s life-threatening response to infection. 

Flu might potentially aggravate pre-existing medical conditions. Persons with asthma, for example, may have asthma episodes when sick with the flu, and people with chronic heart disease may have their condition worsened as a result of the flu.

People who are at a higher risk of contracting the Flu

Anyone, including healthy people, can become ill with the flu, and serious flu-related complications can occur at any age, although some people are at a higher risk of developing serious flu-related complications if they become ill. 

This includes :

  • persons 65 and older,
  • People with Diabetes,
  • People with asthma, or lung diseases.
  • people with heart disease,
  • Pregnant Woman
  • children under the age of 5.

The Best Flu protection is a Flu vaccine

The flu vaccine is especially crucial for diabetics since they are more likely to suffer significant flu complications. 

Because flu vaccinations are improved each season to keep up with evolving viruses, and because the immunity produced by flu vaccination diminishes over time, yearly vaccination is recommended for the best flu protection. 

Flu vaccines protect against the four flu viruses predicted to be the most frequent throughout the forthcoming season, according to studies.

The CDC advises that everyone 6 months and older get a seasonal flu vaccine every year, ideally by the end of October.

Vaccines Against the Flu for Diabetics

Injectable influenza vaccines (flu injections) are advised for patients with diabetes and certain other medical conditions. 

Flu vaccinations have a long and proven track record of safety in diabetics.

The live attenuated influenza vaccination (LAIV), generally known as the nasal spray vaccine, is recommended for people aged 2 to 49 who are not pregnant. 

However, patients with certain chronic medical disorders (such as diabetes) should not normally receive LAIV.

Any questions you have about the flu vaccine can be answered by your doctor or another health care expert.

The pneumococcal vaccinations

Having the flu raises your chances of contracting the pneumococcal illness. 

Pneumonia is an example of a potentially fatal consequence.

Diabetics should also be up to date on pneumococcal immunization to help protect against pneumococcal illness. 

A diabetic management plan should include pneumococcal immunization. Find out which pneumococcal vaccines are suggested for you by speaking with your doctor.

Foods to Eat & Drink

Even though you don’t feel hungry when you first get sick, it’s crucial to try to eat something. 

If you don’t eat, your blood sugar may drop dangerously low.

You can eat things from your typical diet. If you have a fever, nausea, or diarrhea, drink 1 cup of fluids every hour you are awake. Water and broth are both decent options. You can sip the beverage instead of gulping it down all at once if you like. The most important thing is to stay hydrated.

Sip liquids like water, tea, or sugar-free ginger ale if your blood sugar is too high. If it’s too low, try something with roughly 15 grams of carbohydrates. 

Drink a half-cup of apple juice, a quarter-cup of grape juice, a cup of sports drink, or a half-cup of ginger ale. Always compare what you eat and drink to your usual diabetes diet to ensure that these foods and drinks are permitted in your scenario.

Every 3 to 4 hours, consume 35-50 grams of carbs. Try clear soup, ordinary soft drinks, Popsicles, unsweetened applesauce, apple juice, or sports drinks if you can’t consume solid meals.

Unless your doctor instructs you otherwise, continue to take insulin or other diabetic treatments.


Influenza antiviral treatments are medications that combat the flu by preventing flu viruses from multiplying in your body.

Antiviral medications can make your flu symptoms less severe and help you recover faster. 

They may also help to prevent significant health problems that can occur as a result of flu infection.

Treatment with an antiviral medicine for influenza should begin as soon as feasible because these medications perform best when begun early (within 48 hours after symptoms start).

An influenza antiviral medicine requires a prescription from a health care professional.

When to Call your Doctor?

If you or your kid has diabetes and thinks they have the flu, contact your doctor right away so that treatment can begin to help prevent major consequences.

Call your doctor if your symptoms are severe, have lasted many days, or you have a fever that won’t go away. You should also make a call if:


  • Breathing difficulties or shortness of breath
  • Pain or pressure in the chest or belly that does not go away
  • Constant dizziness, bewilderment, and inability to rouse
  • Seizures
  • Not urinating
  • Unbearable muscle pain
  • Severe shakiness or shakiness
  • Fever or cough that goes away but returns or worsens
  • Chronic medical disorders deterioration


  • Breathing quickly or having difficulty breathing
  • Lips or face that is bluish
  • With each inhalation, the ribs draw in.
  • Chest pain
  • Unbearable muscle pain (child refuses to walk)
  • Dehydration (no urine for 8 hours, dry mouth, no tears when crying)
  • When awake, he or she is neither alert or engaging.
  • Seizures
  • Fever of more than 104°F
  • Any fever in children under the age of 12 weeks
  • Fever or cough that goes away but returns or worsens
  • Chronic medical disorders deterioration

Have you had your flu shot?… Get Vaccinated today to protect yourself and your family from Flu..

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