Article by Marie Miguel

Diabetes has a wide range of side effects. It’s beyond the low or high blood sugar incidents, mood swings and physical affects, such as glaucoma, low blood circulation and more. It’s more than managing your diet. Diabetes also affects your mental health.

Here are some ways diabetes and mental health are interconnected:

Realize the emotions associated with diabetes.

When a person is diabetic, he or she may experience rapid mood swings. This can lead to anger, fear of the unknown, denial of the disease or other facts of life and mild to severe depression. Know your personality traits and how diabetes affects these and what it adds to your emotional plate. You may not know how to manage your diabetes when you’re diagnosed. Work through your emotions and find a treatment plan that works for you while under a doctor’s care. Having a chronic condition is stressful and causes myriad emotions. After all, blood sugar and insulin levels affect a diabetic’s brain in various ways, causing severe mood swings and can lead to depression.

It causes delirium.

If someone doesn’t manage his or her diabetes well, the diabetic could exhibit delirium symptoms. This causes confusing thoughts and actions. You may not know what is happening inside your brain, and those around you may not know what is going on. If it goes untreated, then the diabetic is at risk for more cognitive impairments over time — and even death.

It can also cause dementia.

Down the road, a diabetic can develop dementia as he or she gets older. When glucose levels rise and fall rapidly, for example, this causes stress in blood vessels (which can cause hypertension) and in the brain (which can cause more mental health related disorders)/ Diabetes restricts blood flow to the brain, and it can lead to damage of the brain due to to oxygen deprivation.

How To Get Help For Your Mental Health and Diabetes

How do you get the help you need? Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is your mental health and other struggles making it difficult to manage your diabetes?
  • Are the side effects of diabetes impacting your relationships in negative ways?
  • Does your diabetes make it more challenging for you to do the things you have to do and the things you enjoy?

If you answered “yes” to one of more of these questions, you may want to talk with a diabetes psychologist. He or she could help you manage your diabetes in such a way that your overall quality of life improves for you and those around you. Make sure to eat a diabetes-friendly diet, exercise and get enough sleep. Learn more about diabetes and educate yourself on remedies.

It could be difficult to talk with those close to you about your diabetes. You don’t want to worry them, and at the same token, they may or may not understand the ins and outs of the disease. Talk with your primary care physician about the mental and physical symptoms associated with diabetes. You could also chat with someone online at BetterHelp to better understand how your diabetes is affecting you and your mental health.

By Marie Miguel

Marie Miguel is an avid internet researcher. She is fueled by her determination to answer the many questions she hasn’t been able to find the answer to anywhere else. When she finds these answers she likes to spread the knowledge to others seeking help. She is always looking for outlets to share her information, therefore she occasionally has her content published on different websites and blogs. Even though she doesn’t run one for herself she loves contributing to others.