5 Ways to Manage Your Diabetes Care
Diabetes is a condition that affects my life, but it has not defined me. I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes at age 34 and soon found out that glucose monitors were to take over my day-to-day. Managing diabetes became an all-consuming 24/7 job for me, y'all, with no relief in sight!
Feeling good about living with diabetes
But through hard work, patience (and some flexibility), living with diabetes became manageable - even enjoyable sometimes. This blog post is for all of you who live with diabetes. Whether you have Type 1 or Type 2, this article will give you five easy ways to manage your diabetes and feel good about how you live as a person with diabetes.
My type 2 diabetes diagnosis
When I was diagnosed at 34, my whole life changed. My body could no longer regulate its blood sugar. So now this machine has taken over. It wasn't just that; living with this illness brought on new challenges that required an entirely different kind of lifestyle than I ever expected.
The most challenging aspect for me? I felt shame about feeling like something was wrong or defective because my life wasn't "perfect" anymore. This mentality led me to neglect my urgent health needs.
Take control of your diabetes care
I had to get over the shame. I became comfortable taking diabetes care into my own hands. This process took time, but once I could let go of the shame, I took control of my health and improved how I felt about myself. Here are some tips that helped me get to this point:
1. Identify your fear or anxiety
Identify situations where you might be avoiding taking diabetes care because of fear or anxiety. Are you afraid to check your blood sugar? Or maybe taking insulin sounds like too much responsibility.
Whatever it may be, identify what situation is causing you to fear and resolve it head-on! If taking insulin shots scares you, then hold your hand out in front of you for five minutes until the fear fades away.
2. Reward yourself
Reward yourself for taking care of your diabetes. Take time for yourself, even if that time consists of checking your blood sugar or taking insulin shots. Many people with diabetes around my age are busy with careers, families, and financial obligations. That being said, many people don't have much time left for themselves.
How can you take excellent care of yourself if you're constantly putting everyone else first? If taking the time out is not possible, try rewarding yourself in some way when taking care of diabetes (i.e., treating yourself to a jello cup after taking insulin shots).
3. Find your inspiration
Find people with diabetes that inspire you! You will learn best by example. Search for someone who looks like they are doing a great job taking care of themselves and ask them what they do to take excellent diabetes care. Ask about their diet, lifestyle, and how they feel taking care of themselves over a long period. See if any of the actions that work for them are actions you can try.
4. Know your "why"
Don't forget why taking excellent diabetes care is so important! This is an idea that took me a while to understand fully. I've realized that taking the best diabetes care possible now will help prevent complications from forming later on in life.
The more problems you have down the road because your blood sugars aren't being regulated now, the more challenging taking control will be! Make this number one priority for yourself - to live a long, prosperous life with diabetes!
5. Find your support
Find someone who knows the ins and outs of managing diabetes. This person can be a family member, friend, or caregiver. When you feel down or worried about managing your diabetes care, talk to this person, and they will help put things into perspective. They can offer support and encouragement when times get tough! There is nothing more helpful than knowing there is always someone supportive by your side when taking your health care into your own hands.
Diabetes management can be a struggle
These are just some tips that helped me when taking control of diabetes was difficult. Everyone with diabetes has dealt with different struggles, so I'm sure taking control has come about in various ways for everyone out there.
What tips do you have to manage your diabetes care? Please share them below!
Do you have a family history of diabetes?