Anxiety and Diabetes?

By tabby9146 Latest Reply 2014-08-01 18:11:01 -0500
Started 2014-07-17 14:23:29 -0500

**Here is an article I saw that I wanted to pass along. I wonder if for me, there is a link. I never had anxiety until not long before I was diagnosed in 2008. Then it seemed to go away for a very long time and kept coming back. The anxiety attacks feel like low blood sugar, but each time I checked, mine was never low. I "feel" low sometimes in the 70s. Anyway, it has slowly started getting more frequent though the attacks are very short. So I wonder…

Is there a link between having diabetes and always feeling anxious? Maybe, says the American Diabetes Association (ADA).

Of course, plenty of people feel anxious, whether they have diabetes or not. But having the disease adds an extra burden of worry. It can be hard to tell the difference between normal (and even useful) worrying and the kind that indicates a problem.

Additionally, low blood glucose levels can contribute. When blood glucose levels are low, people often say they feel shaky and agitated, which can be embarrassing and even dangerous. Many diabetics can have low glucose anxiety, says the ADA. Preventing lows is important, but so is preventing highs. That’s why it’s important to maintain stable blood glucose levels.

Here are some tips from the ADA on dealing with anxiety:

Try to picture clearly what worries you. Picture it and describe it to yourself in detail. Sometimes writing it down helps.

Does anything help you manage your worry? Some people find relief in physical exertion or exercise. Others find relief in meditation, prayer or laughter. Some find that making one step toward changing the worry helps. Talking about your worry to a friend or family member may also help. Try different approaches and repeat the ones that work best.

If nothing helps and you can’t think of anything that would help, the ADA recommends that you talk to your health-care provider.

10 replies

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2014-07-23 22:02:55 -0500 Report

tabby, some great ideas here. Living with a chronic condition adds a layer of uncertainty to your life, and that can result in anxious feelings. If the anxiety is getting in way of your ability to function, it is also a good idea to talk to a mental health professional. Thanks for sharing this!

operation health
operation health 2014-07-26 15:02:37 -0500 Report

Hi, I also think that it is wonderful and opens the door for those who are ashamed of their condition. We live in a world of artificial perfection which is quite intimidating to those of us who arn't perfect. Which by the way is most people.

tabby9146 2014-07-24 13:42:10 -0500 Report

no it isn't that bad. yet. I hope it does ot become worse, it has been the same for a few yrs now. I can go weeks or months without what I call an attack, which is just light headed, or dizzy feelng, or just pain nervous for no apparent reason. it is very short lived, but it really scares me. I never got used to it, and I tell myself it WILL go away and it does and I do deep breathing and I know my breathing gets shallow when this happens, and I just try to be aware of that. Yoga helps too. thanks.

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2014-08-01 18:11:01 -0500 Report

tabby, thanks for following up. It sounds like you have a strategy in place for when it hits. Yoga can be a great way to stay more relaxed.

tabby9146 2014-07-24 13:43:16 -0500 Report

I never "worry" about my diabetes because I am controlling by diet and exercise, and doing very well, good numbers daily, good A1C, so I know it isn't that. it can happen on the best days but at times, I do find myself wondering if it will happen when I am in a certain store where it has happened more than once, and sometimes I think that can bring it on.

Waffles&syrup 2014-07-19 23:21:13 -0500 Report

I have had anxiety for 11 years now and I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes 5 years ago and I get panic attacks at work from worrying about a low even though there is sugar all around me ( I work at an ice cream company) I will know my sugars at a good level but still have attacks.

robertoj 2014-07-17 19:43:09 -0500 Report

I find that anxiety is greatly reduced when I respect the seriousness of the disease but don't take myself too serious. With a healthy routine it is manageable.

jigsaw 2014-07-17 17:43:58 -0500 Report

Some very important info, maybe even critical in some cases. Excellent advice, especially for anyone that is having a difficult time managing their diabetes!

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