Looking After Your Diabetes

Diabetes UK

Managing your diabetes, making changes and fitting the demands of diabetes into your lifestyle can be challenging at times.

Effective diabetes care can only be achieved through working closely with your diabetes healthcare team – they are there to support you in self-managing your diabetes. The most important person in the team is you – because the decisions made will affect you. Taking responsibility for your diabetes will enable you to manage your diabetes more effectively. Ask questions and request more information if you need to.

Support from other people

Talk about your feelings with your family and friends – they may be concerned and wish to help. Involve family and friends in your understanding and care for your diabetes – they may be able to help. Ask someone to go with you to your healthcare team appointment especially if they care for you. Get to know other people with diabetes.

Join one of Diabetes UK’s local groups, take part in a support weekend or discussion forum on the internet.

Taking control

  • Get the information you need. The more you know, the more confident you will become and the easier it will be to manage your diabetes.
  • Recognise your role: take some personal responsibility for managing your diabetes day-to-day
  • Be honest: give accurate information about your health and how you are really feeling.
  • Set goals: put into everyday practice the goals you may have agreed in your care plan.
  • Examine your feet regularly between reviews or ask someone you know to check them for you.
  • Ask for help if you are ill and know the 'sick day rules'.
  • Know when, where and how to contact your diabetes healthcare team.
  • Attend your appointments or rearrange them as soon as possible.
  • Make a list of points to bring up at your appointments.
  • Carry some form of medical identification about your diabetes.
  • Discuss with your diabetes healthcare team if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, so that pre- and post-pregnancy advice can be organised with your obstetric team.
  • Give feedback to your healthcare team about the treatment and care you have received.
  • Treat NHS staff with respect.

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