Being diagnosed with diabetes is a life-changing event. And while it is a serious disease, diabetes is one of the few conditions we can learn to control and actually prevent from causing further complications. Every complication of diabetes is preventable, but identifying and learning the tools to manage diabetes is the key.
However, as much as some people might like for it to be, diabetes education is not a "one and done." It is truly a lifelong process. New approaches to treatment are being introduced on a regular basis, involving new medications, new devices, and new technology. So it is very important for anyone with diabetes, as well and their loved ones, to stay informed and current regarding diabetes care.
When it comes to staying educated about diabetes treatment, there are countless resources available: your healthcare provider, the internet, your local hospital or library, and diabetes education centers, just to name a few. What are the most reputable sources? And how do you know if an education program is credible?
Just as there are standards of medical care for diabetes, there are standards for education programs. These standards are set by accrediting organizations to confirm that patients receive the most accurate and current information in diabetes care and management. The American Diabetes Association (www.diabetes.org) and the American Association of Diabetes Educators (www.diabeteseducator.org) are two such national accrediting organizations that ensure education standards are being met.
November is National Diabetes Month, which is a great time to take the initiative and begin learning more about your diabetes care and management! As a starting point, here are the basic facts anyone with diabetes should know about their health. They are the "ABCs" of diabetes care:
- A - Know your A1c level
- B - Know your Blood pressure
- C - Know your Cholesterol
- S - Stop Smoking
The National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP), a partner with the National Institutes of Health, has many resources and tips for learning about diabetes. Check it out and start learning more today: http://ndep.nih.gov/
Become a lifelong learner about diabetes management. It will make all the difference.
The information provided within this site is for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for consultation with your physician or healthcare provider.