It’s all intertwined.

I’ve been feeling a little off the past few days. Physically off. It’s not an “I feel like crap” feeling. More like, “I’m definitely not one hundred percent”.

But when I get this way, I can’t help but think about the autoimmune origins of my Type 1 diabetes. Having an autoimmune disease makes you more susceptible to other ailments.

I had a tooth problem a couple of weeks ago. There was an infection, and I needed to take an antibiotic prior to getting a root canal last week. And now that the infection is at bay, and I don’t have the root of the tooth left (which means I shouldn’t experience any more pain there), I feel kinda lousy this week.

Which makes me ask certain questions:

Since I already live with Type 1 diabetes, is my immune system compromised to the degree that I’m more likely to experience these kinds of issues back to back?

Do I have to worry that each time I take an antibiotic I’ll be less likely to be helped by it? Will that be compromised by my faulty immune system?

Will all of this get worse as I get older?

If that’s true, how do I mitigate the effects of, well, getting older?

It’s that last question that really gets me going. I don’t like being sick… I’m not a good patient (except for the diabetes, and it’s taken me nearly 24 years to get there). If I’m going to feel better in the future, I’ll need to become more knowledgeable about everything having to do with my health.

For now, my diabetes numbers are looking pretty good through all of this. I have to do what I need to do to feel better, and then learn more about my diabetes, my overall health, and how they go together. We never stop learning. I hope.

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  • Kate Cornell  On December 23, 2014 at 9:34 am

    I hope you feel better soon. I’m going through a “not feeling great” period right now and I’m stymied. Also looking at a looming milestone birthday soon and trying not to dwell on getting “old”. 🙂 Merry Christmas Stephen!


    • StephenS  On December 23, 2014 at 2:19 pm

      Kate, I hope it all gets better before it gets worse. Merry Christmas!


  • Karen  On December 23, 2014 at 10:13 am

    I’ve always wondered the same thing. I feel like I’m way more susceptible to every little germ those around me. Glad to know I’m not crazy to feel this way.


  • Scott E  On December 23, 2014 at 12:33 pm

    Q1: I think that, since the immune system is too busy fighting off those newborn beta-cells, that yes, it does a lousy job tending to the other stuff (some recent research by Dr. Faustman seems to suggest that the T1 body can make, just not sustain, insulin producing cells). Perhaps when the body quits trying to make insulin altogether, it’ll be more willing to step up to the plate to fight other things. (This, of course, is my own conjecture and can probably be disproven by someone smarter than myself. But until then, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it)

    Q2: As I understand, the bacterial infections mutate to become resistant to the antibiotics. The body doesn’t become resistant to them. So I doubt you have anything more to worry about than anyone else in that regard.

    Q3: Probably. Growing old just sucks, plain and simple. I have so many more aches and pains at 40 than I did at 39. I blame age, not diabetes.

    Q4: If you find out, could you please let me know?

    Sorry if this isn’t the everything’s-gonna-be-alright chant you were hoping for, but I do believe this is just a “funk” that you’re in, and in due time, you’ll be out, and everything will.


    • StephenS  On December 23, 2014 at 2:23 pm

      I think you’re right Scott, and I always appreciate your detailed responses. Happy Holidays!


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