Type 2 Diabetes – Long-Term Stress Can Lead to Depression
Finding out you have Type 2 diabetes can be frightening. In fact, it can easily stress you out as you worry about all the changes you will have to make in your lifestyle. Chances are you learned management needs to concentrate on diet, exercise, medication, and checking your blood sugar. Certainly these are four essential aspects of effectively controlling diabetes. Another equally significant factor in managing your blood sugar, is controlling your stress level.
Unfortunately, a common reaction to receiving a Type 2 diabetes diagnosis, is depression. Oftentimes, the depression can be almost as crippling as the many complications of diabetes itself. But despite what you may believe, it is possible to have diabetes without feeling depressed.
Depression often comes from fear. Excessive, prolonged stress causes poor blood sugar control, which in turn, leads to frustration and despair or even fear. This leads to pessimism and resignation, and surrendering to defeat. And then, the diabetic starts to believe managing diabetes is impossible. The conclusion reached is “this is hopeless, so why should I try?”
With diabetes, it’s the fear of not knowing what lies ahead for you, what complications you will suffer, how much the disease will impact your life, and so on. Since people fear what they don’t understand, it makes sense that having knowledge would help to alleviate this problem.
Your doctor is a good source of information. Write down all of your questions so they can be answered. If you have a viable answer for each of your concerns, you have much less of a reason to worry about it and become depressed.
Diabetics also become depressed because they let the disease take control. They see their health affected, their energy level depleted, their favorite foods taken away and their quality of life slipping away. Who wouldn’t be depressed? But that is how things happen when you are not in control.
When you choose to be in control and are healthier, much changes. You have energy because you exercise and have conditioned your body. You can still enjoy your favorite foods, as long as it is in moderation. And the quality of your life will actually improve from your lifestyle changes. If you are healthier and able to enjoy life much more than before receiving your diagnosis, how can you be depressed?
The secret to defeating depression is knowledge, support and change. Learn everything you can about your disease so you will realize what you are capable of, despite having Type 2 diabetes. Gain support from friends and family so you know you aren’t alone and have people caring for you. Be willing to make changes that are going to give you your life back in an improved version of what it was before receiving your Type 2 diabetes diagnosis.
Lastly, remember Type 2 diabetes is not the end of the world. There are movie stars, CEOs, and Olympic athletes who all have diabetes. It doesn’t hold them back: in fact, it pushes them to make sure the disease doesn’t win.
Depression doesn’t automatically come with a diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes or else every diabetic would be depressed all the time. You can only be depressed if you choose to be overtaken by self-imposed stress.