Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Help Yourself

Part of being supported is knowing how to help yourself sometimes.  As we all know, diabetes is a largely self managed condition, where I'd wager most of us get to spend maybe an hour or two with a professional over the course of an entire year.

How do we make sure we get the best out of that fleeting time we spend with Healthcare Professionals (HCPs)?

I think there's a couple of simple things we can all do to make those appointments more productive.

Firstly, in the days or weeks leading up to them, write down a list of questions you want to ask or make a note of anything that's been troubling you about your diabetes.  Remember that this doesn't have to be limited to just high or low blood glucose levels.  Diabetes is as much about psychological and emotional support as it is physical or medical help.

You can read a good blog about asking for help on Ninjabetic's blog.  

The second thing we can all do is demand the care we are entitled to.  The National Diabetes Audit published last week gave some startling revelations about the standard of care for people with diabetes, particularly highlighting the lower standard of care given to adults under 40.

Whilst the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence recommends 9 key care processes everyone with diabetes should be given, Diabetes UK goes further, covering 15 things.  You can find that list on the DUK website.

Make sure you know what you want to talk to your HCP about and don't be afraid to demand that standard of care you should be receiving.  It's not always easy but it will definitely help you in both the long and short term.

As always, if you want to talk to someone about diabetes, whether something's worrying you or you just want some advice, you can contact us through the blog, via Twitter (@AndyPeerSupport) or by e-mailing  Everything remains completely confidential.

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