Diabetes-related anxiety is not uncommon. Nor is it nonsensical. Diabetes can be a life-threatening disease, even if you're good about monitoring blood glucose levels. Having diabetes can induce anxiety because it promotes a fear of losing one's independence; losing one's identity; losing one's health, and more.
While anxiety may encourage some to take action, it can paralyze others and prevent them from getting the most out of life. To those ends, we offer up some tips on cutting into diabetes-related anxiety:
Develop Discipline. If there's anything you should develop discipline towards, it's managing your blood glucose. Med compliance, activity choices, diet, and choices of glucose monitoring devices give you no reason not to become disciplined about managing your blood glucose. With discipline comes confidence, with confidence comes calm.
Arm Yourself with Knowledge. Wisdom arises from a combination of gained experience and learned knowledge. Don’t restrict yourself to what your health care team tells you. The more you know, the better prepared you are, the less you have to worry about.
Resist the Hermit's Temptation. Get engaged in the life going on around you by spending time with friends and family, getting involved in your interests, and appreciating the little things in life.
Get it All Out. Writing in a journal, or blogging, helps get your emotions out when you have no other avenue to do so. Self-expression is cathartic, and contributes to lower levels of anxiety.
Exercise. Burn off nervous energy and get a better night's sleep. The consequences are reduced anxiety, especially if you're getting a good night's sleep.
Keep an Open Mind. Stay abreast of the latest developments in diabetes. Take what you learn to your doctor, and do it with confidence.
If you continue to struggle with anxiety, or if you simply want extra support, discuss your anxiety with your health care team, which can help you in a variety of ways, including referring you to a specialist or offering you advice from their own experiences treating other diabetics.
Photo: DNA India