Managing your Diabetes - Balanced Diet
To manage your blood sugar levels and maintain a healthy weight. Both are important when you have diabetes.
Managing your Diabetes - Managing Stress
If you’re feeling stressed, your body releases hormones like cortisol and adrenaline. This should give you an energy boost for a ‘fight or flight’ response. But the hormones actually make it harder for insulin to work properly (known as insulin resistance) and as energy can’t get into your cells, your blood sugar levels rise.
Managing your Diabetes - Being Physically Active
As exercise is good for diabetes, it is good to stay active.
Annual eye screening
Diabetes can lead to eye damage called retinopathy. Everyone living with diabetes over the age of 12 will get an invite to a regular eye screening, if you have not received an invitation please contact your GP Practice who will refer you. Retinopathy doesn’t show any symptoms in the early stage but can be spotted and treated early by having your regular eye screening.
For more information please visit https://www.diabetes.org.uk/guide-to-diabetes/managing-your-diabetes/diabetic-eye-screening
Children and diabetes
Most children are affected by type 1 diabetes and will be cared for by the local hospital specialist team. Type 2 diabetes occurs more commonly in adults, but type 2 diabetes in children is on the rise, fuelled by the obesity epidemic.
Local support groups
Diabetes UK has active support groups working locally all over the United Kingdom. Groups typically meet once a month, but they often also take part in many other activities such as fundraising, campaigning and raising awareness. Find your local support group on the Diabetes UK website: Diabetes UK: Local Support Groups, or why not set up your own if there is no group in your area?
Signs and Symptoms
If you’re worried you, your child or someone you know has diabetes, visit the Diabetes UK website to find out what the signs and symptoms of diabetes are.
Annual health check
When you have diabetes, you’re entitled to certain checks, tests and services every year to help you get the care you need. You’ll know this as your annual review
Website: Diabetes UK: Your 15 diabetes healthcare essentials
Gestational diabetes is high blood sugar (glucose) that develops during pregnancy and usually disappears after giving birth. It can happen at any stage of pregnancy, but is more common in the second or third trimester.
Mental wellbeing services
Living with Diabetes can be demanding and overwhelming. It can place an additional burden on our already busy lives due to, managing medication, testing, diet and the longer term complications around having Diabetes. Research tells us that one in three people with Diabetes can experience symptoms of depression and anxiety that can make managing Diabetes more difficult.
Technology and diabetes
There are lots of different types of diabetes technology, like insulin pumps and continuous glucose monitors (CGM for short). When you hear your healthcare professional talking about diabetes technology, they’ll usually be referring to tech that helps you take insulin or tech to check your blood sugar levels.
15 healthcare essentials for diabetes for good diabetes care and prevention of diabetes complications
Foot care is one of the 15 healthcare essentials for people living with diabetes find out about the others on the diabetes website.
How to take care of my feet to prevent foot problems?
We strongly recommend to check your feet on a daily basis. Whether you’re about to put your socks on, or you’re taking them off before bed, have a good look. Any changes, and you should see a healthcare professional straight away. This is how we can prevent major foot problems and amputations. Have a look at the Diabetes UK website on how to check your feet.
Smoking negatively impacts your feet
You can find more information on how to take care of your feet on the following websites:
- NHS How to look after your feet if you have diabetes
- Diabetes UK How to look after your feet
- College of Podiatry A Patient’s Story video
What to do when you have a foot problem?
Know who to call when you have problems with your feet. Note down the phone numbers of your local services such as your GP out of hours service Surrey Heartlands wide.
Attend your annual foot check
A trained professional should check your bare feet once a year. It’s a good chance to check anything you might have spotted with them yourself. But don’t wait a whole year to ask them. If you notice a problem – get it seen as soon as you can.
Know the signs of serious foot problems when you have diabetes
Diabetes UK have lots of information about how to recognise serious foot problems. You can also order their free leaflet 10 steps to prevent foot problems.
Surrey Downs Health and Care
Surrey Downs Health and Care is an innovative partnership between local NHS organisations. Together, we have been providing adult community health services in Surrey Down.
Why are people with diabetes more at risk for foot problems?
Visit the Diabetes UK website to hear from a diabetic patient about foot problems and to read more on why people with diabetes are more likely to develop foot problems.
People with Type 1 are offered an education course called BERTIE from Epsom and St. Helier Hospital. The BERTIE course involves attending a six-hour group session once a week for four consecutive weeks.
Please note: During COVID all face to face courses have been paused, currently people with Type 1 diabetes are encouraged to complete the Bertie course which is free and available online at bertieonline.org.uk
Education for people with Type 1 Diabetes
The aim of patient education is for people with diabetes to improve their knowledge, skills and confidence, enabling them to take increasing control of their own condition and integrate effective self-management into their daily lives. High-quality structured education can have a profound effect on biomedical outcomes, and can significantly improve quality of life and satisfaction.
Diabetes education: learning to look after your diabetes provides more information on Diabetes Education, why it is important and some of the courses available.
It is important that people with diabetes lead a healthy and active lifestyle and you can find information about healthy eating and exercise from Diabetes UK and from Active Surrey.
Education for people at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes
Diabetes UK are working together with NHS England and Public Health England to provide Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP), the first national programme to help those who are at high risk of Type 2 diabetes.
People with Type 2 diabetes registered with a GP in Surrey Downs are encouraged to attend the EMPOWER Diabetes Programme provided by Spirit Healthcare. The four hour course is available to groups of people either face to face or via webinars. You don’t need to ask your GP to refer you to the course, you can find out more about the course and sign up immediately on Empower.
If you prefer not to learn as part of a group you can sign up to the Oviva remote education programme and work with a specialist dietician over the internet or telephone, find further details on the Oviva website. Your GP can refer you or you can sign up online.