Over 40, female T1Ds

(Deborah) #1

Hi. I’m new here, but I’ve been. T1D for 30+ years. I’ve had a pretty easy relationship with diabetes, until I turned 40. Now it’s a whole different ballgame!

Any women out there sharing this experience? I would love to connect, learn from your experiences or just chat with someone who “gets it.” Cheers!

(janmosso) #2

Hi. I’ve been T1D for 50+ years. My relationship with diabetes has never been easy. I’ve been on a pump for about 18 years and that has helped a lot. But it seems like diabetes makes the stuff that goes along with getting older even more difficult than it would be otherwise. I recently had cataract surgery, which I believed would be no big deal based on what friends told me. But because my pupils no longer dilate with those drops due to diabetes. The Dr. had to use some kind of pupil stretcher to get to my retina. I was awake for the whole thing. It was not fun.

(pennylane42672) #3

I’ve been T1 x 45 years and never had an “easy” relationship with it. I’m guessing at 40 you’re premenopausal. For me it started when I was about 48? But nothing prepared me for 50. When I was 12, everyone talked about and told me what to expect with puberty. Middle age however, is a big mystery, especially when you have T1. I’ve talked to my gynecologist, endocrinologist, pcp, and all I’ve been given is handouts to read. With T1, I know we have more challenges then non T1 women. Along with hot flashes, fatigue, and headaches, all of which I would mistake for lows, sleeplessness, unwanted weight gain, increased insulin doses, and roller coaster highs and lows, I’ll take puberty any day. For over 30+ years, I’ve followed a semivegetarian
diet; no red meat, white bread simple sugars, fried foods and sat fats. Lean chicken and fish, vegetables, fruit, whole grains, yogurt. The diet I followed for years now makes my bgs soar. I would be very interested to hear from other women who are pre, peri, and post-menopausal and how they handle these changes.

(pennylane42672) #4

@janmosso…I never knew long term T1 impeded pupil dilation. I’ve noticed my pupils don’t dilate hardly at all and at my last eye exam, they dilated me without problems. It sounds painful what you went through with cataract removal. I hope you recovered without incidence.

(Dennis J. Dacey, PWD) #5

@janmosso it is common to be wide awake during eye surgery - I’ve had 100’0 of eye surgery sessions since the time that I was in the first group of a half dozen PWD diagnosed with retinopathy to volunteer in 1966 for experimental treatment with a modified weapons grade ruby LASER. Very small eye pupils, which I have, are one of the several neuropathy; the same neuropathy that decreases ear canal size and coronary artery size.
I strongly doubt that the Cataract Surgeon was going anywhere near your retina - cataracts are on the front surface of the eyeball where as the retina is the rear. But yes, I do agree with you that at times there can be much discomfort with some of the necessary procedures needed to preserve our eyesight.

(Patti) #6

My pupils do the opposite in the past year, they stay dilated for 48 hrs. I’m 55, 26yr T1 and in peri about 2-3 mos now. I’ve had sporadic hormone changes for two years now but now it’s for sure. A T1 friend told me that I prob would have high sugars when that time came & it’s so true. I’ve settled into a pretty regimented routine to try to stay on top & feel that I’m in control, not my hormones. First of all, I now eat no carbs, no processed anything, very little meat, & a Mediterranean diet. I have to know that my highs & lows are from hormones not from what I ate. I check my bs every hour,( my Apple Watch timer is great,) because I can have a normal number & 30 min later be over 200. If I didn’t check hourly I can fly up to 250-300, all courtesy of hormones. So with hourly checks, I bolus (safely with the bolus wizard, Medtronic) and keep it in check. I’ll have a 3-4 hr window of time each day of 200-300bs during a two week or so period of time each month when my body would normally menstrate. And each day I never know at what hour my bs will start rising, so I can’t mess with basals much. I also have lows with this too. Bad lows like in 20 min I can drop to 45. There’s no rhythm to it, I can only test often, eat healthy Whole Foods, hit the gym daily to maintain my weight, not easy, and get through each day. I drop badly when I do cardio in the gym, but do fine with weight training, which burns more calories anyway. I check even every 15-20 min when I do cardio to catch myself because I drop so fast. I never used to be like this! Only in last couple yrs., I could go an hr on elliptical & maintain my bs in my first 25 D yrs. So far this is how I’m handling my bs with the crazy hormones. None of my drs., endo, pcp, gyn have had a T1 at my age dealing with peri to give me any advice. It all goes back to food for me, I eat combinations of plain yogurt, almonds walnuts, eggs, and seeds like flaxseed, chia, hemp, wht germ, agave to sweeten for breakfast, lunch is dried seaweed, edamame, apples, cheese, pbutter, salads, nuts, berries. Dinner is a lean protein & salad or veggies. I do allow on weekends a meal that is more relaxed to keep me sane! Like chips/guacamole/salsa & a beer, & I eat the toppings off of pizza if we have that out

(iloveautumn) #7

New to this forum as well… not T1D. (30+ years, now in age 40’s). Lots of strange health issues and being premenopausal doesn’t help any of them one bit. Hopefully more will join in to share their experiences and we can learn from each other.
Thanks for opening the door to this conversation :wink:

(Catherine) #8

Hi! So this is the reason I joined the forum! I have had relatively great control for 30 years now. Suddenly, at 41 I feel like nothing is predictable. I am SO frustrated. A1cs are still good, but my CGMS shows my glucose going all over the map, all day long! I feel like my only hope may be to eat no carbs ever. What has your experience been since 40??

(Patti) #9

I would get sporadic, crazy blood sugars well before I went into peri menopause also. Basically I would be insulin resistant at times and it would just happen now and then. I’ve talked with two other T1’s, one going through peri now, like me, & the other has finished menopause. The key they found to leveling out their blood sugars was the estrogen patch; starting low & increasing to find what dose works to stabilize BS. I’ve had Breast cancer And am unable to use a patch. Started the Freestyle Libre CGM recently to watch BS really close which is a huge help and I love the system! I had an allergic life threatening reaction to the platinum in the transmitter wire dexcom & Medtronic have. The Libre is a plastic insertion, so thankful something came out that I could use

(iloveautumn) #10

For me its been just way more difficult to manage sugars overall… certainly not as easy as it was in the past. Add to it a host of other auto immune health issues, a full-time schedule and family, changes in sleep, life stressors, etc… i guess no wonder, right? It can definitely get frustrating. Luckily i have had a couple of supportive endos through the last few years… surprisingly more so than the ones i had years ago when things ran smoother, lol. Middle age health issues alone are challenging enough…add years (decades) of T1D to the mix and it just becomes even more so.