Father has diabetes and not taking care of himself. Any advice?

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My 80 year old father has diabetes and is dependent on insulin shots. For the past 3 years he has not been eating right and has blood glucose drops in the 50 range. He seems to believe that taking a high glucose drink or candy is the answer. Yes, it fixes the low, but I feel this is not fixing the eating problem. No matter how gently I try to talk to him about this, he becomes very angry immediately. I am only concerned for his welfare and I want to help. He is showing early signs of dementia and can be very volatile at times. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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Top Answer
Poorly controlled Diabetes eventually leads to liver and kidney failure. When those fail you start to see the dementia you describe. Please go with him to all MD visits and be sure they are doing complete bloodwork to track his health. Let Dad do all the talking, and when he is done, ask about meds for the anger management.
Pamstegma, Thank you for the response. I hope he will be reasonable and let me go to the Dr. with him (if he will make an appointment). If I am not allowed to attend the appt. then I believe he will not be honest with the doctor. I can not take any further verbal attacks from him. As always, I will do the best I can. Thanks again.
He sounds like my Dad. We got in a huge fight last year when I said I was going to the doctor with him. I have since learned how to deal with his dementia better, but he was pissed off, insisted that the doctor would be insulted if I went along, went by himself and did not remember one detail of the appointment. The best I've been able to do is talk to his doc on the phone but it's like pulling teeth to get these guys to return a call.
BTW, my mom is 84,and diabetic. She's still in good shape mentally and does fairly well testing her sugar, injections etc. but this is serious business. We've had a couple trips to er with low sugar. If your dad has dementia it's going to be hard to control it without some in home care at the least.
He may be in denial, maybe he doesn't feel like eating-there could be several reasons why he doesn't eat right. If he's not so able to fix a meal, you can cook extra and make him a plate or you can cook a couple of different entrees and freeze them so all he has to do is take out of the freezer and reheat. You can assist him with shopping, shopping can wear out an older person, maybe he doesn't like to admit he needs more help so approach carefully. If he won't allow you to attend the dr. appointment with him, call the office and leave a message with the nurse expressing your concerns. Be supportive. Good luck

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