Navigating the world of diabetes management can be overwhelming — especially for those who have been recently diagnosed. Having diabetes means adjusting to a new diet, checking your blood sugar levels, and sifting through occasionally confusing information and resources. Considering all of these new changes being implemented into one’s life, it can cause depression, anxiety, and stress for those with diabetes. Finding ways to manage these symptoms while also managing a recent diagnosis is key towards living a healthier and happier life with diabetes.
The following are three tips to help newly diagnosed diabetics deal with the shock and lifestyle changes that come with their diagnosis.
1. Accept your emotions and let yourself feel them all.
When first being diagnosed with diabetes, many feel angry, scared, and lost. This can include feelings and thoughts such as, “Why me?” It is important to let yourself feel these emotions. Diabetes is stressful, and it is likely to alter your lifestyle. But, remember that that does not mean your life has to change drastically. With proper resources and information from your doctor, you can manage your diabetes. Learn healthy ways to cope with your emotions, and try to let yourself feel whatever they may be. Repressing them can potentially cause issues further down the road, including denial and depression.
2. Confide in loved ones or professionals.
During this time, emotions will be high. Some individuals have the instinct to repress how they are feeling or isolate themselves. By talking to family and friends, it can help you work through your feelings. Express yourself, and be honest and open. Let them know that you would appreciate their support, as well as how you would like them to be there for you during this time. This may include help with going to doctors appointments, setting alarms for checking your blood sugar levels, or even just being there to listen. For some, looking into the possibility of professional help may be beneficial as well. Confide in your doctor or therapist to help figure out what is going to work best for you.
3. Find a community.
Many individuals with diabetes feel alone or misunderstood when they are first diagnosed, as sometimes they are the only one in their circle of friends who has the condition. Being able to relate to others is extremely important because it can help those diagnosed with managing their diabetes and looking to them for tips and advice.
The Diabetes App is a free application that can be downloaded in any mobile device app store. This application is solely for the diabetes community. It has users who are type 1, type 2, and supporters. It acts as a social media platform where users can create a profile, join groups, post, message, and add each other. It also has access to resources including meal plans curated by dietitians, access to professionals, live streams, exercise videos, and more. By joining The Diabetes App, those who are recently diagnosed can receive access to invaluable resources and friends who will all be able to relate to what they may be experiencing and offer insightful advice.
To conclude, being newly diagnosed with diabetes can be a troubling time. It can cause distress and concern about changes that will occur in the individual’s life. This is why it is important to figure out what will work best for you in terms of managing your diagnosis. Some helpful tips include confiding in loved ones such as family friends, and leaning on them for emotional support.
Be open about how you are feeling, both to yourselves and your doctors or family. Reach out to others when you need help, and let them know how they can assist you. Find a community that understands you and can relate to you.