Supporting a loved one with diabetes is a significant and impactful role, and it’s essential to approach it with empathy, understanding, and a commitment to both their wellbeing and your own.
Here are some valuable tips to help you support your loved one while taking care of yourself in the process:
- Open Communication: Initiate a “safe” conversation with your loved one to discuss their needs and feelings. Be open about your concerns and ask what is and isn’t helpful in their care routine. Creating a space for open dialogue can strengthen your relationship and help both of you better understand each other’s perspectives.
- Respecting Boundaries: Some individuals may find it uncomfortable to discuss their diabetes. Let them know it’s okay, but also explain why you need information. By respecting their boundaries and demonstrating your care, you can create a more supportive environment.
- Self-Care: Caring for someone with diabetes can be emotionally and physically demanding. Remember to take care of your own wellbeing and seek medical advice if required. Take regular breaks and engage in activities that bring you joy and relaxation. Remember, you can’t pour from an empty cup!
- Make Cooking Fun: Explore diabetes-friendly recipes online and cook together. Meal planning and preparation can be a fun and bonding activity. Preparing meals in advance can also make daily life more manageable, especially if you have a busy schedule.
- Shop Online: Consider online grocery shopping to save time and ensure you’re making healthy food choices. Consulting with a dietitian can help you make informed decisions about nutrition.
- Keep Active Together: If you and your loved one are mobile, engage in physical activities together. If mobility is a challenge, look for gentle exercises or chair exercises that can be done at home. Consult an Exercise Physiologist for personalised exercise plans.
- Diabetes Management: Learn how to perform finger-prick tests, which can be especially helpful for your loved one. Seek guidance from a Credentialled Diabetes Educator to ensure accurate testing.
- Insulin Injection: Understand that there are various ways to administer insulin that doesn’t require lifting up all clothes or exposing large areas of the body. Seek guidance from a Credentialled Diabetes Educator to find the most suitable and comfortable method, especially if your loved one has mobility limitations.
- Unexpected Life Events: Work with a Credentialled Diabetes Educator to create a plan for handling unexpected life events related to diabetes. This plan may include emergency care, managing high or low blood sugar levels, managing diabetes when ill, and diabetes management during travel especially when travelling through different time zones.
Remember, the support you provide is invaluable, but it’s equally important to take care of yourself. By maintaining open communication, understanding your loved one’s needs and boundaries, and seeking guidance when necessary, you can navigate the complexities of diabetes care together while ensuring your own wellbeing.
At 360 Health + Community, our team of dedicated diabetes educators, accredited dietitians, and exercise physiologists is here to provide you with the essential support and guidance you need while caring for a loved one living with diabetes.
Our diabetes educators possess the knowledge and expertise to help you understand the condition and its management, offering insight into effective strategies and lifestyle adjustments. Our accredited dietitians can assist you in creating balanced and diabetes-friendly meal plans, taking the guesswork out of nutrition and our exercise physiologists are available to help you and your loved one find suitable physical activities, even if mobility is a concern, ensuring that health and wellbeing remain a priority.
Together, our multidisciplinary team can help you navigate the challenges of diabetes management, making the journey smoother and more informed for both you and your loved one. Your commitment to their health, combined with our professional guidance, is a powerful combination for enhancing their quality of life.
To learn more about our services or to book an appointment with our team, call us on 1300 706 922 or send an email to email@example.com.