If you or a loved one was recently diagnosed with Diabetes– take a breath. It will be okay. If you need some words of encouragement, watch Rhodes’ video about Hope for T1D Kids. Next, get busy.
Here are our top 3 tips for managing a new diagnosis:
- If you don’t already have an endocrinologist you like, find one. This is especially important for kids and teens. They need a diabetes doctor they like, trust, can related to, can be honest with, and will want to impress. Diabetes rebellion and burnout happen. So make sure your Endo is on your team! You may have to have consults with two or three docs before you find the right fit. Don’t be afraid to shop around within a practice or go to another practice entirely. Don’t worry about offending anyone. This is a very important relationship for adults, parents and children. As tweens and teens move through puberty, their hormones may cause blood sugar to be all over the place. If a doctor of the same gender would make these conversations easier, find the right fit.
- Contact your local JDRF or ADA for their “Bag of Hope” or newly diagnosed care kit. These have valuable books, resources, tips, tools, and information. Also, get involved in your local chapter of these organizations. Participate in a walk, a gala, or a bike ride. These events often have vendor fairs where you can talk to the device companies, local support groups, and diabetes treatment centers about questions or new drugs or products. Also, contact the local JDRF or ADA office and ask to be connected with a local family or individual with more seasoned experience to mentor you. It takes a village! Diabetes cannot be managed alone. Recruit your friends and family to participate as well. Ask your spouse, child, or friend to sign up for our emails or follow us on Facebook. Educate those around you, and ask for help.
- Be positive and be proactive. This disease is challenging, but it can be managed. This is not a death sentence. With a good attitude, a healthy lifestyle, good medical care, lots of support from friends and family, this disease does not have to limit your life or what you can do or accomplish. But, it takes hard work. Every day, every meal, every night, you have to work to comply with doctors orders, carb counts, finger sticks, etc. You can do it. We are here for you.