Advocating for Fellow People with Type 2 Diabetes
Do you advocate for other fellow diabetics? With diabetes becoming more and more prevalent there are much greater chances you will meet other people with diabetes who are just starting their journey. New diabetics will need someone to talk to about this condition.
How I learned the ropes about type 2 diabetes
All the information given to you by your healthcare professionals and on the internet can be extremely overwhelming. When I was first diagnosed I knew nothing about diabetes even though my mom had it and my dad's sister did too.
My mom passed away before I was ever diagnosed so learning about it from her just wasn't possible. I learned what I could from the doctors and a massive amount of research on the internet.
I'm still learning more and more every day. I learned how to control my diabetes very well, mostly on my own. I learned much more than what the doctors were telling me. The doctor asked me why I checked my sugar so frequently. My answer was to keep track of fasting, pre-workout, postworkout, pre-meal, post-meal, and random times to keep an accurate picture of how everything affects me.
How to help others with type 2 diabetes
As I've gotten my sugar under control I learned that there were several neighbors who had type 2 diabetes and I didn't even know it before. When they saw me riding my bike around the neighborhood and walking laps around my yard, they struck up a conversation and I explained why - to control my diabetes. That's when I learned of them having it too.
Provide support and encouragement
I was then able to share everything I've learned and even learn from them on some things. I did learn that each one of them wasn't doing too well in managing their sugar. Me being the helping type, I was glad to help them however I could.
All of my neighbors that have type 2 diabetes, except one, were not overweight. Skinny, overweight, you still have to manage the condition.
I'm proud to say that I've been able to help each of them lower their A1c. I highly encourage everyone who has type 2 diabetes to both encourage and learn from each other. Everybody is different of course, and experience different results, but a little encouragement could go a long way.
Share resources and information
Sometimes you meet other people with diabetes in unexpected places while you're out and about. I stopped at a Walmart recently on my way home from the gym and had a box of test strips in the buggy. An employee there was riding the floor cleaner and saw my strips and stopped to ask if I had diabetes. He started asking me all kinds of questions as he's fairly new with type 2 diabetes and needs whatever advice he could get.
Come to find out he used to be a truck driver for the same company that I still drive for. I didn't even tell him where I worked either. He came off the road to manage his diabetes. He wasn't able to find a way to manage it on the road, as I have.
I referred him to Type2Diabetes.com. I hope he has found my advice helpful and was able to return to trucking if that's what he wishes.
Advocacy can make a difference
Advocating for others can make a difference in their life but be careful not to spread misinformation. Spreading misinformation can be dangerous. It's important to consult your team of medical professionals before acting on any advice and encourage others to do the same.
Did you know that diabetes is a risk factor for developing chronic kidney disease?