Type 2 Diabetes: 7 Ways to Cope With Your Emotions

Don’t let the news of your type 2 diabetes diagnosis throw you for a loop. Here’s how to manage with your emotions and take control of your condition.

Susan Amoruso
Reviewed by
Philip Levy, MD
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Watch for signs of depression. People with diabetes are 50% more likely to become depressed than those without the condition. Unfortunately, depression makes it more difficult for people with diabetes to control their blood sugar levels, so it’s important to get treatment. If you’re experiencing feelings of sadness and helplessness and are having difficulty concentrating, sleeping or eating, talk to your healthcare provider.

Guarantee a good night’s sleep. With your mind in overdrive and anxiety levels at an all-time high, falling asleep may be challenging after your diabetes diagnosis. But poor sleep can put you at risk of overeating. After a night of disrupted sleep, the part of the brain that increases your appetite becomes more active, making it tough to fight those carb cravings the next day. Before bed, whip up a bowl of oatmeal—it contains the sleep-promoting hormone melatonin and will help stabilize your blood sugar throughout the night.

Seek out support. Who could better understand the daily annoyances like counting carbs and checking blood sugar than others living with diabetes? Ask your healthcare provider to recommend a support group in your area or do a quick Google search to find an online community or diabetes-specific Facebook page. 

Don’t be too hard on yourself. In the beginning, it’s easy to slip up with diet or exercise—especially if you’re trying to tackle every lifestyle change under the sun all at once. With the help of your endocrinologist and diabetes educator, come up with a plan that feels doable. If you have a setback, pat yourself on the back and move on. Over time, the little changes will take hold and add up to a healthier you.

April 2013