World Diabetes Day: Resources for Diabetic Patients

I did not realize this was going to be a week packed with days reserved for recognition!  I started out the week with postings acknowledging Veteran's Day and National Nurse Practitioner Week.  Today, November 14th, let me pay tribute to World Diabetes Day.

Have you even known a Type 1 Diabetic?  Personally, I mean- a closer relationship than the patient-provider interaction.  In my observations of a few diabetic friends, I have gained great respect for individuals living with Type 1 Diabetes.  The daily life of a diabetic is difficult.  Constant dietary monitoring, frequent blood glucose checks and insulin administration is not an easy task.  Simply meeting a friend for lunch has multiple medical implications.

The diabetics I have known have embraced their diagnosis, risen to the challenges of managing their disease and approach these daily tasks with courage.  However, I am certain living with Type 1 Diabetes presents challenges with which I cannot relate.  My Type 1 Diabetic friends have shared with me their struggles but I cannot offer adequate advice or empathy for all their frustrations.  This is where blogging comes in.  Through reading blogs of other diabetics, I believe individuals diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes (and Type 2 Diabetes) can empathize with the triumphs and struggles of their cohorts.  Here are my favorite blogs written by Type 1 Diabetics. Share them with your friends, family and patients diagnosed with this disease. 

1. Diabetes Daily

The mother of all diabetes blogs, Diabetes Daily offers everything from diabetes facts, glucometer reviews, healthy recipes and a forum where individuals can interact by posting questions and comments.  This site is a great resource for patients and providers alike.

2. Diabetes Mine

Founded by a Type 1 Diabetic in 2003 "to offset the feeling of isolation with diabetes and share some of what I was learning", Diabetes Mine now has four regular diabetic bloggers discussing the ups and downs of life with diabetes.

3. Diabetes Self-Management

Diabetes Self Management provides a wealth of information for individuals living with diabetes.  They publish a bimonthly magazine that offers up-to-date information on the diagnosis as well as discusses topics such as exercise, nutrition and new drugs.  The Diabetes Self-Management blog posts topics of interest from diabetes greeting cards to how airport scanners can cause diabetic devices to malfunction (who knew?!).

4. Six Until Me

Sharing a personal perspective on life with Type 1 Diabetes, Kerri Sparling started blogging because she was tired of hearing the horror stories of life with diabetes and wanted to connect with others sharing her daily struggles. 

5. Blogging Diabetes

Tony Rose, founder of Blogging Diabetes, hated hearing that he had 'good' control of his diabetes.  He didn't want to settle for good, he wanted excellence.  Tony blogs to help others learn about living with diabetes and to help them in their quest for excellent control of diabetes.

Bring out your blue (the official color of the diabetes awareness movement) today and support your friends, family and patients living with diabetes.  As nurse practitioners, let's pledge to help out patients gain excellent control of their diabetes.  Find further online and local resources to support your diabetic patients in their quest for a healthy lifestyle and encourage them in their efforts for strict diabetes management.

What ways have you found to encourage diabetic patients maintain glycemic control in your practice?