Coping with diabetes
Finding out that you have a chronic condition like diabetes is scary, and it’s normal for you to feel frightened, sad or stressed. It’s important to deal with stress because stress can raise your glucose levels. And when you’re under stress, you’re less likely to take care of yourself.
Stress may not go away, but there are ways to lower it. These include:
• Doing some type of physical activity
• Talking with a friend or loved one
• Watching a favorite movie
• Taking a nap
• Doing yoga or meditation
You might also find that joining a diabetes support group can be helpful, either in-person or online. Check with your local hospital for support group offerings, or ask your provider or diabetes educator. You can also call your local American Diabetes Association to find out about resources in your community. Visit http://www.diabetes.org/in-my-community/local-offices/.
If you can’t seem to shake feelings of sadness, you may be depressed. Depression is more common in people with diabetes than in people without diabetes. Taking care of diabetes is hard, and you may feel alone. Having complications of diabetes, such as heart disease can also lead to depression. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help if you feel down. Your provider can refer you to a mental health counselor, or you may find that a support group or talking with a clergy member is helpful. Therapy and even medication for depression can be effective treatments. Depression is treatable!
Do your best to make time to take care of yourself. That means getting seven to eight hours of sleep each night, eating regular meals, making time for physical activity and surrounding yourself with people who care about you.