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Living with a chronic disease daily can be difficult and tiring. Particularly if you are newly diagnosed, it is best to gather a diabetes health care team so you can be proactive, self-aware and lean on the holistic support from health professionals and your family and friends.
Diabetes can be very overwhelming, regardless of the stage of your journey. This is why it is crucial to build a support network to help ease the emotional and physical burden of living with diabetes. It is important to set up your own ‘diabetes care team’ as they will help lead you to a path of control and provide guidance and support.
Who can be a part of your diabetes care team?
It can be anyone who helps provide comfort and assistance. To help you start, here are some examples of the kinds of people you may want on your team!
Your doctor - They are a crucial member of your support network as they will provide constant guidance about what to expect, what to do, and what to avoid. However, it is important to notify your doctor of any changes in your condition whether it be good or bad. As they can only offer assistance based on what they are aware of.
Nurses - Nursing staff have an important role and clear responsibilities when treating patients with diabetes or who are having tests to diagnose diabetes. This role and associated responsibilities will be specified in local workplace guidance and policies.
Your dietitian - A diabetic dietitian is responsible for helping you to understand what you should and should not be eating as well as why. They provide knowledge regarding the foods you intend to consume and provide you with the tools to make your own health decisions.
Friends - Friends are a powerful influence as you often dine out with them. It is important for a friend to understand the importance of eating well and how to manage diabetes. Friends are able to provide support when you need help.
Family - Your family is an important area of your life and they are there to support and comfort you. They will help you to understand living with diabetes and how to control your blood glucose levels and manage your condition.
It is important to keep your support network in the loop about your ‘diabetes care plan’ so that they can help out and support you when you need it. Your diabetes care team is there to help you (and the best part of having a diabetes care team is that you've got good people in your corner to help formulate a personal plan for you to look after yourself and live your best life!)