Living with a chronic illness like type 2 diabetes can seem overwhelming at times. Sometimes you might feel that no one understands the stress that you feel day after day. If prolonged, these overwhelming feelings of anxiety, stress, and isolation can become a barricade in your quest for wellness.
It does not have to be this way. You must seek support to maintain control of your type 2 diabetes and to enjoy your life to the fullest. Whether your main support comes from your spouse, a close friend, your physician, or a diabetes support group, there are people who care and can help.
In every issue of WebMD the Magazine, we ask our experts to answer readers' questions about a wide range of topics. In our January-February 2011 issue, we asked WebMD's diabetes expert, Michael Dansinger, MD, to answer a question about the link between prediabetes and diabetes.
Q: At my last checkup, my doctor told me I have prediabetes. Does that mean I'll ultimately develop diabetes?
A: Almost everyone who develops type 2 diabetes develops prediabetes first. But not everyone who has prediabetes...
Because type 2 diabetes requires regular medical checkups, obtaining proper support begins with a specific and accurate diagnosis from a doctor who understands the disease. You might choose to see an endocrinologist, specialists who treat diabetes, to make sure you benefit from the latest medical findings. Beyond the initial diagnosis are a host of health care professionals you'll need to see from ophthalmologists to pharmacists to registered dietitians to diabetes educators. All of these professionals will be part of your diabetes health care team and work with you to help you stay well.
Consider a Diabetes Support Group
It may be a good idea to branch out and join a diabetes support group as you experience give-and-take with other men and women who have type 2 diabetes.
A support group is geared toward the unique needs of its members and is especially important for those with diabetes. While support groups are not psychotherapy groups, they can provide you with a safe and accepting place to vent your frustrations, share your situation, and receive comfort and encouragement from others. In many such groups, the latest methods of diabetes self-management and treatment are discussed, and members can give coping suggestions that you may not be aware of. The assurance is given that "someone else knows what I am going through" as people share their struggle living with type 2 diabetes. This camaraderie is most necessary in order to revamp your thought processes. After joining such a group, you may realize that the best experts on a disease are often those who live with it daily. Remember, always check with your doctor before taking a new "suggested" remedy.
Try WebMD’s Diabetes Support Group
Support groups not really your thing? You can find comfort and support in WebMD’s type 2 diabetes support group. Share experiences and learn from others living with type 2 diabetes.
Seek Support From Loved Ones
Type 2 diabetes extends beyond the patient and can affect the entire family. Especially with a chronic illness, personal support is necessary, whether from your spouse, family, friends, or co‑workers.
It is important to educate your friends and loved ones about your disease, sensitizing them to why you must check your blood sugar regularly or why you have to carefully choose your foods for snacks and meals. Having a family meeting with a diabetes educator is another good way of helping everyone understand type 2 diabetes and why some lifestyle changes have to be made to accommodate your illness.
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Your level is currently
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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