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  Your Diabetes Management:
  Tips on How to Work with Your Healthcare Provider
 
You may be one of the millions of Americans living with diabetes who need insulin injections to manage their condition. If so, your doctor or diabetes educator has most likely gone through all the benefits of using insulin to manage your diabetes. In fact, it is quite common for individuals, like you, to experience a wide range of emotions and concerns surrounding the act of taking multiple injections, including anxiety or discomfort. Unfortunately, it is also quite common for individuals to not address their injection concerns with their healthcare team.

However, your physician or diabetes educator should be the first person to tell you that communicating about all aspects of your care is extremely important. Regardless of whether large or small, the only way your healthcare provider can give the best care is if they know there is a problem. If you have concerns about your injections, empower yourself to talk with your physician or diabetes educator about them. Having an open conversation with all the members of your healthcare team is the best way to ensure optimal health.

Just like with anything else in life, you should come to all doctor or diabetes educator visits prepared to talk about any issues you may be experiencing. Some helpful ways that you can prepare for your next visit include:


 
 
    Consider how injecting insulin is affecting your life. Are there thoughts you have on improving your day-to-day experience that you might want to discuss with your healthcare provider?
Have a frank and open discussion with your family or friends. They might identify things to discuss with your physician that you haven’t even thought of!
If you know you have a diabetes check-up in the coming weeks, plan to keep a diary the week prior to your appointment. Include descriptions of each meal, list if you experienced any problems or if you skipped a meal or an injection, and bring the diary with you to show your healthcare provider. Remember, do not hold back or be embarrassed if you have skipped injections, you are not alone and the only way to fix the problem is to communicate the issue with your doctor or diabetes educator; they are there to help you
Write down a list of questions/concerns you have for your doctor/diabetes educator before your appointment. Some common ones are:
How can I more smoothly include taking insulin injections into my daily routine?
Where are the proper injection sites and how often should I rotate them?
I find myself altering my eating schedule to compensate for not taking my
injections. Can you tell me what steps I should take to take to ease this anxiety?
My injections are not painful, but they are a hassle and impact my daily life. Is there
a way to make them easier to deal with?
 
 

Many people that take injections for their diabetes see it as a personal failure, when it certainly is not. Diabetes is a progressive and chronic disease. If other treatments do not work, it is because the treatments failed, not because you did. If you have any questions about this, speak with your physician or diabetes educator, who can talk with you more about these feelings and really show you that injections are just another way of managing the disease.

Once you start a conversation with your doctor/diabetes educator about your health, don’t stop! Keep the communication going, and your diabetes management may become easier for you.
 
     
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