I must say, I am very happy how we “rode” Naplan testing time this year.
Two years ago, when Mr T had NAPLAN testing for the first time, I saw stubborn highs during the mornings of the tests. His BG was hovering around 14, 17, 19.
Poor thing, he must have felt awful. Of course, he had given the correction dose as soon as he tested high, but it took two corrections and several hours in-between for the BG to get down within range.
This year I drew on our previous experience encouraged by the wise words of Gary Scheiner: “If you know what causes the highs, such as stressful situations like exams, next time increase the basal for that period starting 2 hours earlier”. (for more wise words by Gary, check out my “Trying to think like a pancreas” post, HERE)
Bravely, when I saw the BG rise on the morning before the test (warning: stressing in progress) I increased the basal by 30% from 7am till 12 noon for the first day of the test.
The testing was taking place between 9:00 and 11:00 am. Here is the result:
Day 2 (confidence up and Mr T-s favourite subject: reading comprehension) – I had discussed with Mr T what I had done with temp basal the previous day and asked him if HE thinks he would be as nervous about the test as he was the day before. He said NO. It is an easy test for him, he said. We decided not to increase the basal that day but told him to do temp basal +20% for 2 hours if he tests high at morning tea (and to correct, of course).
Mr T’s BG hovered around 10 during that second morning, with no increases in basal. Clearly he stressed less, compared to the morning before when +30% basal produced the same result, but he did stress a bit, for sure.
Day 3 (maths test, not as confident) – I knew he would stress but did know how much. I played it safe and only increased the basal by 20% from 8:00 – 11:00 (the test lasted for an hour only from 9:00 until 10:00am). As you see his BG went up to 14.7 after the test, but with the correction came right back down within range by lunch. Yup, could have increased the basal by 30-40% that morning.
As we know, every person is different. They all react differently to similar situations. The insulin requirements could be very different and I hear that some kids even require less insulin on test days. This little experiment proved that Mr T needs more insulin when he is “stressed”.
And just to confirm my theory that taking tests does make Mr T nervous and DOES raise his blood glucose, let’s have a look at the DAY AFTER. On Friday, with no tests in sight, relaxed Mr T had a day of steady BG’s in range.
* NAPLAN is series of standardized Literacy and Numeracy test which year 3, 5 7 and 9 kids take every year here in Australia.