The Connection Between Diabetes and Depression We Have to Talk About
Depression: another big D word and largely silent, invisible illness. Standing alone it can be emotionally devastating and incredibly difficult to cope with. Add diabetes, and depression is often given further means to fester and grow quite dramatically, with stable blood sugar control often overlooked or given less attention than it needs to have. Most recent studies show that depression is twice more commonly found in individuals that have diabetes than those without.
But why? And how do we address it? Uncontrolled diabetes can be problematic enough to treat, especially with many health practitioners not addressing the emotional roots of the diagnosis at all. With depression thrown into the mix the proactive approach a person with diabetes needs to take can fall easily by the wayside, with self-care becoming a burden. Of course, such despondency can often be a part of someone experiencing diabetes with an eating disorder as well. Depression, diabetes and an eating disorder make up a dangerous mix whereby each condition can be fueled by the others, maintaining a cycle that is difficult to break out of.
Despite the high numbers of people with diabetes who also experience depression, any information available upon diagnosis is sorely lacking. You are typically given all the education that you need in relation to what insulin to take, what to do in cases of hypo or hyperglycaemia and which snacks are better than others, but what about the emotional issues? It seems quite rare that any insight or support is provided to acknowledge what coping with diabetes can do to your head. Continue reading