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Diabetes and Emotions

Being diagnosed with diabetes brings with it a full range of emotions. Most of the emotions you may feel such as anger, sadness, confusion, and distress are normal, and these emotions may lessen with time. Still, emotions, especially strong ones, are important indicators that something might be wrong and changes need to be made.

There's no doubt that diabetes is mentally, emotionally, and physically challenging. If you've been diagnosed with diabetes, chances are that your doctor recommended some major lifestyle changes. Whereas you may have been used to eating anything you desired, now you have to focus on losing weight, eating a different diet, checking your blood sugar levels regularly, and even taking pills or injected medications. While these changes are necessary to manage your diabetes and to keep you well, they can still be frustrating and feel different. It is normal to have strong emotions while adjusting to a new life with diabetes.

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Common Emotions in Diabetes

Denial and Diabetes

After learning that you have a chronic disease such as diabetes, feeling denial is normal. You may feel that "this can't be happening to me" or that "there has been a mistake" or you will "wait for more test results" even though a doctor has confirmed the diagnosis.

Denial is often a way to cope with an overwhelming situation. By temporarily denying your diabetes, you may be able to come to terms with it slowly rather than all at once. It is important to recognize that denial should only be a temporary stage though. To remain healthy, you should be consistent on testing your blood sugar, taking your medications, if needed, seeing your doctor regularly, eating healthily, and getting plenty of physical exercise.

Confusion and Diabetes

As with any disease, managing diabetes can be difficult at times. You may have trouble keeping track of all the medical jargon and understanding exactly what steps your diabetes specialist told you to do. Modern health care systems can make this worse because you may be seeing several different doctors. Each doctor may have a different take on your diabetes.

Over time, you will get more familiar with the diabetes, the medical terminology, and the questions to ask your doctors at the visits. Still, if you're feeling confused, you may find it helpful to write out a daily lifestyle plan to keep healthy. Your plan can include a schedule of times to take your medications, times to test your blood during the day, times to exercise, some healthy eating strategies, and more. After writing the plan, show this to your doctor to make sure the steps you are taking will keep you well.

Anger and Diabetes

With diabetes or any chronic illness, you may feel anger for many reasons. For instance, you may feel frustrated, uncertain about your health, and a loss of control. Because diabetes affects many different aspects of your life, anger is a normal response.

But feeling angry does not have to be destructive or negative. Instead, you can make your anger work for you. Try channeling your anger to accomplish something positive. You might use your anger to assert your health needs with your doctors. Or you can use your anger to energize yourself to do things that keep you healthy like exercising more. While your anger might not go away, you can use it to manage your diabetes more effectively.

 

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If the level is below 70 and you are experiencing symptoms such as shaking, sweating or difficulty thinking, you will need to raise the number immediately. A quick solution is to eat a few pieces of hard candy or 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey. Recheck your numbers again in 15 minutes to see if the number has gone up. If not, repeat the steps above or call your doctor.

People who experience hypoglycemia several times in a week should call their health care provider. It's important to monitor your levels each day so you can make sure your numbers are within the range. If you are pregnant always consult with your health care provider.

Congratulations on taking steps to manage your health.

However, it's important to continue to track your numbers so that you can make lifestyle changes if needed. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

Your level is high if this reading was taken before eating. Aim for 70-130 before meals and less than 180 two hours after meals.

Even if your number is high, it's not too late for you to take control of your health and lower your blood sugar.

One of the first steps is to monitor your levels each day. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

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