Taking action

Taking action

Managing their disease can be challenging for your loved one with diabetes. There are a number of ways that you can help them.

Educate yourself about diabetes

There is a lot of misinformation about diabetes, and it is important to understand how best to support your loved one. It can be helpful to:1,2

  • Attend medical appointments with your loved one, if they agree
  • Go along to diabetes self-management classes or sessions with them
  • Use reputable sources of information, such as the American Diabetes Association (ADA), the EASD, Diabetes UK, Patient Associations etc

Motivate and encourage your loved one

  • Both you and your loved one will need time to adjust to the diagnosis of diabetes, and the resulting lifestyle changes:1,2
    • Give them space to come to terms with it in their own time
    • Don’t feel that you have to be constantly positive – it can be helpful to talk about their and your worries too
  • Provide support, but try not to be over-bearing
  • Support them in any needed lifestyle changes by doing things together – such as exercising or cooking
  • Encourage your loved one to test and record their blood sugar regularly; this will help them to keep track of how well they are managing their diabetes
  • Encourage your loved one to speak with their doctor if you or they have any concerns about their diabetes management, or about highs and lows
1. Weisenberger J. Help! My aging parent has diabetes. 03.12.13: http://diabetes.sanofi.us/help-my-parent-has-diabetes/; Access date: 24 Sept 2015.
2. Wahowiak L. 8 tips for caregivers: American Diabetes Association. March 2014: http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/recently-diagnosed/8-tips-for-caregivers.html; Access date: 24 Sept 2015.