Are You in Diabetes Denial?
Denying you have type 2 diabetes won't make it go away. Here's how to accept your diagnosis, manage your disease, and get on with your life.
Tackling Type 2 Diabetes continued...
Don't forget your flu shot. People with
diabetes "are at higher risk of getting the flu," says Breen. So make a
stop at your primary care doctor's office on your way home from work and ask
for the flu shot.
Be good to your heart. "It's critical to control blood pressure,
cholesterol, and your sugar levels," says Breen. "These all play a role
in your risk of stroke and heart disease. If you can bring
all these numbers to within normal ranges, you can really cut your risk almost
to the level of not having diabetes."
Get on with your life. "Clearly, you need to understand what type
2 diabetes means so that you don't minimize it, but don't turn it into a
catastrophe," says Rubin. "You need to know what it takes to live
healthy with the disease, and then you need to get on with your life."
Living Well With Type 2 Diabetes
Don White accepted his diabetes head-on when he was first diagnosed in his
40s, and together with his family, made all the necessary adjustments to his
life so that he could live well with the disease. Now, at 68, he embraces a
healthy way of life.
"My heart is in good shape, my blood pressure and cholesterol are low,
and my eyes are excellent," says White. "Other than the aches and pains
of getting old, I'm doing very well."
Like White, many people diagnosed with diabetes find they can manage the
disease without it getting in the way of the things they enjoy.
"The common refrain I hear from my patients is, 'I can't believe I
waited this long to start managing my diabetes. I wish I had come in so much
sooner,'" says Breen.
Once they get over their diabetes denial, they are so relieved to hear the
news that it is a condition that is manageable, she explains, and it's not the
end of all things pleasurable.