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Step 4: Get Routine Care to Avoid Problems

See your health care team at least twice a year to find and treat any problems early. Ask what steps you can take to reach your goals.

If you have diabetes, at each visit be sure you have a:

  • blood pressure check
  • foot check
  • weight check
  • review of your self-care plan shown in Step 3

If you have diabetes, two times each year get:

  • A1C test - it may be checked more often if it is over 7

If you have diabetes, once each year be sure you have a:

  • cholesterol test
  • triglyceride (try-GLISS-er-ide) test - a type of blood fat
  • complete foot exam
  • dental exam to check teeth and gums - tell your dentist you have diabetes
  • dilated​ eye exam to check for eye problems
  • flu shot
  • urine and a blood test to check for kidney problems

If you have diabetes, at least once get a:

  • Pneumonia (nu-mo-nya) shot

The check markmarks show actions you could take.

  • Ask your health care team about these and other tests you may need. Ask what the results mean.

  • Write down the date and time of your next visit.

  • Use the card of the back of this booklet (PDF, 1.2 MB) to keep a record of your diabetes care.

  • If you have Medicare, ask your health care team if Medicare will cover some of the costs for

    • learning about healthy eating and diabetes self-care
    • special shoes, if you need them
    • medical supplies
    • diabetes medicines​​​​​​

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP) is jointly sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with the support of more than 200 partner organizations.

This information is not copyrighted. The NIDDK encourages people to share this content freely.


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