With 1.75 million Australians already believed to be have diabetes, and predictions that this will double in 20 years in what medical authorities describe as a “21st century pandemic”, the medical aspects are becoming ever more widely known. Less well-known are the psychological consequences.
It can be tiring and worrying for those who live with diabetes and their families. Living with a chronic condition requires constant attention. The consequences of this can include depression and anxiety.
The demands of regular blood glucose testing and medication, attention to healthy eating and regular physical activity can impose considerable strain, and many who have diabetes can feel weighed down under this yoke.
It is by no means rare for those who have diabetes to experience anger, anxiety and sadness. If neglected, these feelings can end up affecting their quality of life and impact on their management of the disease.
Maintaining motivation can also be difficult.
One in four people will experience depression at some time in their adult life. For people who live with diabetes this figure is even higher. Research shows that having diabetes more than doubles the risk of developing depression. Living with this sort of chronic disease and having to cope with biological and hormonal factors and the treatment regime on a daily basis may increase the risk of depression.
Other related emotional issues include:
A diagnosis of diabetes is a life-changing event. It is a time when families can often struggle to adapt to the "new type of normal" they must face. Psychological counselling during this time can be of great benefit to all those involved. Psychology Melbourne can provide you with specialist psychological services in the field of diabetes.