Talking about hypos increases wellbeing for families living with diabetes

A recent study found that the families of people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes worry about hypoglycaemia.

The study published in Diabetes Therapy found that 64 per cent of family members feel “worried or anxious” about their loved ones experiencing low blood glucose issues.

Todd Hobbs, a physician and chief medical officer for diabetes at Novo Nordisk in North America, said that the survey was initiated because family members had not been asked about the burden of hypoglycaemia in any large-scale study.

“We’ve known that families worry about hypoglycaemia, but we haven’t known the extent of the worry, the specifics of what they worry about, their comfort level having conversations (with their loved ones) and their comfort level having conversations with healthcare providers,” Dr Hobbs said.

Other findings showed that more than three quarters of respondents (77 per cent) felt committed to helping their loved one manage hypoglycaemia, and of those who are involved in managing it, 48 per cent said it took up too much emotional energy and 43 per cent said it affected their mood.

“Part of the issue is that family members are worried or concerned and they don’t really open up and talk to their loved one about it. Some do and do it well, but some carry that worry and it affects their lives,” Dr Hobbs said.

“It’s important to have that conversation and through the conversation realize that their loved one is doing well and their risk for hypo is low, or if they’re not, talk about ways to support that person other than just worrying,” he concluded.

The study.

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