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Overview Overview Can diabetes cause mental health issues?

Can diabetes cause mental health issues?

Mental Health
5/11/2022    |    0 min read

The short answer is yes. Your mental health affects your everyday life, making it just as important as your physical health. It determines how you feel, think, act, make decisions, manage stress, and connect to others. Discover more about diabetes and mental health and how to get support in this article.

Common mental health issues with diabetes

Living with a chronic illness like diabetes calls for careful management, which can bring on a slew of emotions. Diabetes can significantly impact your mental health by causing feelings of isolation, burden, and overwhelm, potentially leading to depression, stress, anxiety, and distress.

Diabetes and mental health are weighty subjects because your mental health impacts how well you take care of yourself. Depression, stress, anxiety, and diabetes distress can lead you to eat poorly, isolate yourself from loved ones, miss doctor’s appointments, skip blood sugar checks, and avoid taking your medications.

Depression and diabetes

Compared to people without diabetes, people with diabetes are 2-3 times more likely to develop depression, according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC). Depression can leave you feeling sad, hopeless, and tired. You may have lost interest in the things you once enjoyed. If you have signs of depression, there’s nothing more important than talking to a health professional for help.

Our Head Diabetes Care Specialist Molly discusses mental health, emotional health, and diabetes with diabetes psychologist Bill Polansky. Watch their conversation for tips on navigating the ups and downs of managing your health.

Exercise can help with depression

When you have depression or anxiety, exercise often seems like the last thing you want to do. But once you get motivated, exercise can make a big difference.

Exercise also helps to prevent and improve diabetes, blood pressure, and other health problems.

The 9amHealth team can help you to get started and stay motivated with an exercise routine.

Stress, anxiety, and diabetes

Stress is the fear you feel when you worry about potential diabetes complications like neuropathy or when you worry you’ve overeaten cake at a birthday party. Stress is felt emotionally and physically through sweat or increased heart rates.

Anxiety comes from your reaction to stress, and people with diabetes have a 20% greater chance of experiencing anxiety than those without diabetes.

Diabetes distress

If taking medications, blood sugar checking, and frequent doctor’s visits make you feel worried or frustrated, you may be dealing with diabetes distress. No matter how long you’ve had diabetes, you can experience distress at any point in time. In fact, 33-50% of people with diabetes report experiencing diabetes distress.

Some people downplay discouragement, burnout, or frustration with diabetes, but these feelings are essential to discuss with your diabetes care team or another person you trust. Talking about your emotions will help get you to the treatment you need to feel better.

How to cope with your diabetes and mental health

Talk with our Diabetes Care Specialist

At 9amHealth, our Diabetes Care Specialists (DCS), which are part of your Care Team, can help ease the things that burden you by offering a listening ear and guidance to help you manage your mental health in healthy ways. If paying for your diabetes care is stressing you or you’re frustrated because your blood sugars seem to be high no matter what you do, your DCS will help offer sound guidance and reassurance, so you get the support you need. If you’re not ready to speak with them we offer our chat as an alternative.

Allow us to simplify your diabetes care

Caring well for your diabetes means remembering to refill your medications and running out to the pharmacy. Or does it? 9am.health can help make things more convenient for you by alerting you when your prescriptions expire and shipping your medications directly to your doorstep. With our A1c lab test kits, you can learn about your blood sugar levels from your home with convenient shipping.

Start your free online visit for help

Your diabetes and mental health go hand in hand because they impact one another. Diabetes can cause depression, stress, anxiety, diabetes distress, exhaustion, and frustration which may interfere with caring for yourself and your health.

To learn more about how 9amHealth can help support your diabetes and mental health, visit our homepage to schedule a free online visit so we can get to know you better and how to serve you best.

About the authors

Gaby is a registered dietitian and content creator. When she's not writing, she laughs and cuddles with her kid and a very large standard poodle.

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