23 August 2010

Things for you to remember immediately after diagnosis

Five suggestions for you when first diagnosed with type 2 diabetes:

Forget about the past. While this may not always be easy, there is nothing you can do to change the past. You can always start changes now and that should be your focus. We have many more tools at our disposal today than were available in the past and there are more tools coming on the market every year. We now have many resources that were not available even five or ten years ago. Investigate the forums available today. Investigate the social media and the many blogs with information, the Twitter diabetes outlets, and the Facebook pages devoted to diabetes. And lastly check out the diabetes podcasters and vloggers if this interests you.

Be careful to not over do things and stay away from extreme changes. This is an area where reason is often thrown out the window. Many people do need to loose weight and go on a crash diet immediately. Not that I blame them. They are right in wanting to shed the extra pounds as this will reduce their insulin resistance. They need to realize that after they loose a few pounds, they may hit a plateau and not loose additional weight. They the become discouraged and even some have minor depression and out the window goes their resolve.

A lifestyle change is the course they should follow. This will take some time and dedication, but then the pounds will come off and their desire for food will decrease. However, remember that the key to all this is exercise. And I mean exercise, whether is running, walking, swimming, using indoor equipment, or lifting small weights in a wheelchair. I realize that some people cannot exercise because of other medical reasons, and that has to be okay. The lifestyle change then becomes even more important to aid them in reducing their weight.

Realize that it is not your fault. For those with type 2 diabetes, genetics has a part to play in your diagnosis. So the fact that you have developed bad habits in the past does not mean that it is your fault. The genetics helped determine whether you were susceptible to get diabetes when the conditions were right. You have little or no control over getting diabetes or not. So learn what you can do today to strictly control your diabetes. What you don't do now, that is your fault.

Above everything, relax and don't panic. Please relax. I know that this is not what many people do and by letting panic and stress take over, you are only making your diabetes that much more difficult to control. Learn that stress is bad for diabetes and can make strict control more difficult. Take time to find ways to reduce stress and know what works for you to keep it to a minimum.

Be prepared to accept different treatment options. This is an area where your doctor may have some excellent suggestions based on your recent history. Some doctors do abdicate their responsibility for what ever reason so be prepared.

Depending on your blood glucose at diagnosis, you may want to consider starting on insulin and after getting control of your diabetes then going to oral medications and then to no medications. Or is your diabetes is caught early, starting on oral medications and then moving to no medications if possible. A lot will depend on other medical conditions and your ability to control you weight with nutrition and exercise.

Just remember that others have been down this road before you and speak from experience. These are rules that most people want to ignore for some unknown reason. Granted the diagnosis is a shock to most individuals, and this will take over for some.

Overall, 15% of people with type 2 diabetes don't take any medication (controlling blood sugar with nutrition and exercise alone), and 57% take oral medications alone, without injected drugs like insulin. Sixteen percent of people with type 2 diabetes take insulin only, and 12% use a combination of insulin and oral medication.

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