With so many physical factors to consider, it can be easy to forget that type 1 diabetes is also a condition which can affect your emotional and mental health.
The DAWN2™ study helped advance our understanding and awareness of the challenges of people with diabetes and their families. The study shows that diabetes can represent a major psychosocial (a combination of psychological and social behaviours) and emotional burden. In fact, approximately 45% of people with type 1 diabetes from the study indicated that they experienced emotional distress due to diabetes – so if you’ve ever felt this way, you’re not alone.
It's important to remember that although managing your type 1 diabetes can be stressful and overwhelming sometimes, trying to ignore it could make the physical and emotional problems worse. Finding support, from your healthcare team, family or friends, can be extremely valuable.
Make it a priority to make sure you take care of your mental health. If you are experiencing low mood or anxiety, you should see your doctor who will be able to help. This is not a sign of weakness, rather a sign that you are proactively taking control of your own health.
Stress in itself can cause blood glucose to rise, due to the body tapping into its stored glucose supplies and releasing glucose into the bloodstream – this is an example of how emotional and physical health are finely balanced in type 1 diabetes, so it’s crucial to take care of both.
You can find multiple resources to support you in self-managing your diabetes, and in having productive conversations with your healthcare team.