How Do Support Groups Help With Type 2 Diabetes
Support groups offer a range of benefits, but for individuals with type 2 diabetes, they are particularly valuable. It can be a difficult condition to understand and manage long-term.
People with type 2 diabetes have to consider taking their medications, modifying their diet, and in some cases, changing their lifestyle. In addition to affecting their physical health, this can also have an impact on their mental health.
The authors of a 2019 study found an association between participating in online support groups and better motivation and social support for those with type 2 diabetes. This may reduce feelings of isolation and boost self-esteem. Moreover, seeing others managing their diabetes and living a full life can be an inspiration to other people with the condition.
Offline Online: Finding A Support Group Thats Right For You
A key point to consider is whether to attend an in-person or online support group. Each has its advantages.
Gustavsson says younger people may prefer an online support group, and there are reputable national online support groups available, such as those through the American Diabetes Association. For some, the anonymity of online support makes it easy to ask questions they might be too embarrassed to ask at an in-person session. Online support groups are also beneficial for people who do not have a local in-person support group they can attend. And online support groups have the advantage of being available 24/7, which eliminates the need to be at a set location at a specific time.
But for others with diabetes, an in-person support group might be better. In-person support groups offer the benefit of face-to-face, one-on-one conversation. Sometimes the tone of a conversation can be lost when people are typing messages back and forth on a keyboard, Gustavsson says. Another advantage to attending a support group in your area is the ability to find out more about local resources. Also, you just may make friends you look forward to seeing on a regular basis, making it more likely that you’ll continue attending and receiving the support you need for successful diabetes management.
How To Find Or Choose A Group
There are several factors to consider when looking for a diabetes support group.
Firstly, it helps to know what a person with diabetes expects from one of these groups. For instance, if they want to connect with others, it will be important for a group to allow them to socialize.
On the other hand, if they need more structured support to look after their health, a program or group that addresses this directly will be a better choice. It is a good idea to make a list of the top priorities and consider them while searching.
Next, individuals should look for groups that fit these priorities. They can do this by:
- asking a doctor for recommendations
- asking others who have type 2 diabetes about what helps them
- searching online
An essential aspect of choosing a support group is whether an online or in-person group and format is a better fit. Both offer their own set of benefits.
One of the advantages of a local group is that members may see the same doctors as the person joining. They will also know more about the resources available in their region. In-person groups can also be better for making friends.
Online support groups, however, are more accessible, particularly if someone is not feeling well or cannot get to an in-person meeting. Also, support can be available at any time.
Some individuals may want to join more than one group to get the benefits of both group types.
If a support group is not a good fit, it is always possible to try others.
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Types Of Diabetes Support Groups
There are support groups specifically for type 1 diabetes . Type 2 diabetes support groups exist as well. Further, there are general support groups for people with any type of diabetes.
Diabetes caregivers can even find support groups dedicated to their needs.Also, there are different forms of support groups. Support communities can gather in person or they can meet in cyberspaceonline or via an app. If youre looking for a diabetes support group near you, use the following information to help you discover the right one for you.
Online Diabetes Support Groups
With the advent of smartphones and social media, many diabetes support groups have sprung up online, in various forms. Its an easy way to get started, right from the comfort of your home.
Online discussions are essentially anonymous, and advice is often not vetted by a qualified health professional. Hence, you should use your personal judgement and not believe everything you see or read. Before making any changes to your treatment on your own, you should talk with your primary doctor.
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The Benefits Of Outside Support
Family and friends are often the first line of diabetes support and they can provide quite a bit, says Susan Gustavsson, RN, BSN, CDE, a diabetes nurse educator who leads diabetes support groups at the Center for Endocrinology at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore.
However, Gustavsson says many people with type 2 diabetes often find that it’s more helpful to talk with others personally dealing with the condition. A diabetes support group can provide a place to go to discuss issues that others with the condition may be experiencing too, she says. It can help the person with diabetes realize that he or she is not alone.
There are several factors to consider when looking for a support group, Gustavsson says. Do you want a group that provides speakers or a traditional group with a facilitator who leads the discussion? You might want a support group geared toward a certain aspect of diabetes management, such as eating healthy or losing weight, she says. And comfort is important you’ll get the most from a support group you’re comfortable participating in.
May Improve A1c And Glycemic Levels
The same May 2019 review referenced prior notes that DOC use was associated with neutral A1Cblood test results in adolescents, which may be a positive sign because these individuals A1Cs tend to increase during this life stage. DOC use in adults involved in the study, on the other hand, was associated with improved A1C. A1C specifies your average blood sugar level over the previous two to three months, and its commonly used to diagnose diabetes and monitor the effectiveness of diabetes management plans, according to the Mayo Clinic. Though everyones goals are different, generally, an A1C of less than 7 percent means better blood sugar control and a lower risk of diabetes-related health complications.
Whats more, highly engaged DOC users are more likely to have better glycemic levels than users with lower engagement, according to a study published in the AprilJune 2019 issue of JMIR Diabetes.
The reason for these better results may be that DOCs offer accountability, which motivates users to be more vigilant about their blood sugar and to engage in more self-care activities .
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Support Networks For Type 1 Diabetes
There are a number of online forums and support groups for people with diabetes and their family and friends. Here we list just a few of these:
The groups and forums listed here support people with diabetes. If you know of any other diabetes groups or forums in North West London, get in touch with us, as we are always adding new content to our website.
Make sure you register with usnow, so we can let you know about other support groups for people with diabetes. Well also tell you about diabetes courses and news for North West London.
Finding A Support Group For Type 2 Diabetes
Coping with diabetes is easier when you have access to a network of people who know firsthand what it takes to manage the condition. Here’s how to find the right diabetes support group for you.
After getting a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes, you may be spurred to make important lifestyle changes. But these changes often dont happen overnight, and enthusiasm for eating healthier, getting regular activity, and monitoring your blood sugar can be difficult to maintain over the long term. Finding and sticking with a support group can keep you engaged and motivated.
According to the National Standards for Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support published in Diabetes Care in January 2013, on average, those initial health improvements people often make begin to diminish within six months if a person doesnt have ongoing self-management support. But people with type 2 diabetes who attend support group meetings are better able to sustain or even build on their health improvements, according to a study published in the January 2012 issue of Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice.
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Limitations Of The Current Body Of Research On The Doc
One major limitation to current research, though, is the lack of diversity among study participants. Although type 2 diabetes makes up the majority of all types of diabetes, DOC users tend to have type 1 diabetes, suggesting that people with type 1 may be more likely to seek DOCs, note the authors of the May 2019 study.
In addition, DOC users tend to be non-Hispanic white, whereas American Indians, non-Hispanic blacks, and Hispanics have the highest rates of diabetes in the United States, according to the American Diabetes Association. We need more diversity, we need more people of color to be part of these communities, we need more older adults and people with type 2 diabetes, and even prediabetes to be part of these communities, Gee says.
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Telling Others Can Be Difficult
It can be difficult to tell others you have diabetes, but it can help for certain people to know:
- family can support you especially as you will need to make changes to what you eat
- it’s important your colleagues or employer know in case of an emergency
- being diagnosed with diabetes can affect your mood telling your partner will help them understand how you feel
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Diabetes Help On Call
The Online Diabetes Support Team is made up of compassionate volunteers who know firsthand the ever-changing demands of living with type 1 diabetes . Contact us with your questions, and we will do our best to respond with an email within 48 hours .These JDRF volunteers are available to answer your questions about T1D and get you through this difficult time. Dont worry, you are not alone.
Local Diabetes Support And Information
A good way of finding this help is to join a local support group a Diabetes UK group. These groups offer people living with diabetes a chance to meet and share experiences with others. They are all run by volunteers and typically meet on a monthly basis, often with a speaker on a topic like diet or exercise.
“Talking to people through the group has helped. I’m the sort of person who wants to help other people and I feel very strongly that the more knowledge people have, the better they can cope.”
Shona Freeborn, carer for her husband who has Type 1 diabetes and runs a local support group.
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Quarterly Forum For Peer Support Group Facilitators
Peer support provides the opportunity for people with diabetes to share their knowledge, experience, emotions, ideas and concerns with one another. Peer support can effectively supplement the knowledge and expertise offered by health professionals and offer assistance in daily management, social and emotional support, and linkages to formal health care or community resources.
Facilitators play a crucial role in maintaining the relevance, effectiveness and appeal of support groups. Often, facilitators undertake their role out of hours, without pay and on top of work and family obligations. In recognition of their importance, Diabetes Queensland convenes a Quarterly Online Forum for Peer Support Group Facilitators.
In 2020, many peer support groups had been unable to meet face to face. The forums will provide an opportunity to hear how groups have been faring since then. The forums will also provide an opportunity for Facilitators to:
- Provide feedback on our quarterly e-newsletter
- Discuss ideas for how the small grants program may be useful for Facilitators.
What Kinds Of Diabetes Support Groups Are There
Generally, most support groups can be divided into in-person and online groups. Each has its advantages and disadvantages. Tech savvy & younger people often prefer an online support group, where they can ask questions which can be too embarrassing to bring up at an in-person session. Such groups are bridge geographies and are accessible from anytime and any location.
Other people may be prefer an in-person support group, which often has strong ties to community resources and knowledge about local culture. It is also easier to build human relationships and connections from face-to-face contact.
Diabetes support groups comes in all shapes and sizes. It only requires someone to take the initiative to get a group going. You can even start one yourself! But if havent had any experience with support groups, Id advise you to join one first.
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Not Sure Youre Ready To Dive Into An Online Diabetes Community We Can Help
Diabetes can be an overwhelming and often very lonely condition to tackle. Its something we cant just turn off or deal with later its there 24/7 and it can be hard for the people around us to truly understand what its like.
But please know that you are not alone! Theres a global diabetes community ready to support you, and you can participate as much or as little as you like. Even if youre not ready to meeting other people with diabetes in person, there are several ways in which you can communicate or just listen in and learn from people in the same situation as you, by tapping into the Diabetes Online Community .
The beauty of the DOC is that you can access it from anywhere, as long as you have internet connection. There are probably other platforms as well, but the ones I have found to be the most powerful are Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
DOC on Facebook
There are over 100 support groups for people living with diabetes just on Facebook. There are groups only for women, for parents, for athletes, for foodies, Dexcom lovers, you name it.
I see posts almost daily from people saying that the Facebook diabetes community has changed their lives and that they now for the first time have a support group of people who understand what they are going through. Its such a powerful thing and I really encourage you to at least join for a while to see if you like it.
DOC on Instagram
Patients Who Find A Support Group That Fits Are More Likely To Take Their Insulin Or Other Diabetes Medication Over The Long
Taking diabetes medicine on schedule, whether injecting insulin or swallowing a pill, can be annoying, and sometimes difficult. You know taking your diabetes mediation consistently means good news for your blood sugar, but follow up can be a problem as life gets in the way.
Your doctor has probably nagged when havent been able to stick to your schedule for a dozen different reasons.
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Southern Nsw Albury Wodonga Support Group
Day meetings are usually on the fourth Wednesday of March, June and September at 2pm.Night meetings are usually on the third Wednesday of February, May and October at 7pm.
Annual Guest Lecture Night held in November, on a Wednesday after World Diabetes Day.
Contact Jill Craig 02 6043 1125 or 0400 888 446 or email
How Can Online Support Groups Help You Manage Diabetes
People living with diabetes and diabetes educators alike have been talking about the health benefits of being part of a DOC for several years. We knew the facts we just didnt have the data and the research to back it up, says Cherise Shockley, founder of the #dsma weekly Twitter chat and community manager at diaTribe, an online diabetes education platform.
Yet now researchers are gathering more and more information on the health benefits of DOCs. In fact, online peer support groups were a hot topic at the 2019 Association of Diabetes Care and Education Specialists conference, thanks in part to a review of 47 DOC studies that researchers published in May 2019 in the Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology. That research was followed by a more recent review of nine DOC reviews and meta-analyses published in April 2020 in The Diabetes Educator. The consensus? DOCs are a worthwhile addition to any diabetes care plan. Specifically, researchers found that being involved in a DOC was associated with improvements in clinical, behavioral, and psychological aspects of health.
Here are just a handful of science-backed reasons you should join an online peer support group, according to the latest research.
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Its very important to keep your healthcare provider informed on whats happening, Shockley says. are just a good accessory.
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Set Up A Support Group
The purpose of a support group is to bring together people who are living with diabetes, their families, their carers, health professionals working within the diabetes community, and members of the broader community who have an interest in diabetes.
Support groups can be as small as a group of two or three people who meet or talk regularly by phone or the internet to provide support to one another or it could be as large as one hundred members who come together to hear information from guest speakers and health professionals, share in social outings and run special events.
Regardless of the size of the support group the objective is the same to support people living with diabetes.
If you are interested in setting up a support group, please contact or phone our call centre on 1800 177 055.