Finding a community to share tips and tricks, trials, and information with can be helpful when managing your diabetes. A great community to become a part of is the diabetes online community, a group of people on Twitter who use #doc to connect with each other. For this community discussion, members of the #doc joined to discuss how the diabetes online community has benefited them.

Q. What is your favorite diabetes topic to discuss? What is your most difficult?

A. Diabetes online community:
• Exercise is a tough one for me. As much as I’d love to make it part of my life, I just haven’t yet found a way to get there. I love discussing food with experts like Laura Cipullo. I also love talking about diabetes and tattoos. There is false info about it that needs to go. Plus, it’s a strong way to own your diabetes.
• I love to talk about diabetes tech and advances in it. Probably the hardest issue to discuss is mental health and its impact on diabetes.
• I love talking about education and burnout.
• My favorite topic is tips and tricks, my most difficult is fears.

Q. A diabetes cure has been “five years away” for decades. In reality, what is in store for diabetes in the next five years?

A. Diabetes online community:
• Artificial pancreas-like tech finally hitting the market. There will be a push for an actual artificial pancreas. I hope affordability is factored in.
• I feel like we will see better technology and more acknowledgement that genetics is important in diabetes.
• I see more incremental advances. More accurate CGMs, more closed-loop options, and subscription testing services becoming the norm. But affordability is a huge issue. Technology doesn’t help if it can’t get into the hands of patients.

Q. How important is the diabetes online community (#doc) in your diabetes management?

A. Diabetes online community:
• I had no idea how much there was to know about better diabetes management until I connected with people in the #doc.
• The #doc is amazing! Patients sharing real-life problems and solutions, encouragement, and commiseration.
• The #doc is a good place to interact and get feedback on what others are doing in their treatment.
• It’s nice to connect and see what others are doing and to know you have friends experiencing similar things, but still be able to do what I need to based on my needs.
• The online community empowers me with knowledge and emotional support.

Q. There is always much to learn about diabetes from other PWDs. How do you keep learning?

A. Diabetes online community:
#dblog is awesome for finding human experiences with diabetes. Learn from people outside of the clinic.
• The best way to keep learning is to keep asking, keep lurking, keep listening, and keep open.
• Keep an open mind and try new things.

Q. What have you learned about diabetes in the past year? From whom did you learn it?

A. Diabetes online community:
• I learned to think of food as more than carbs and to consider nutrition. I learned from Hope Warshaw, diabetes educator and author.
• I learn a lot from Dr. Bernstein’s Diabetes University: A Video Guide to Normal Blood Sugar on YouTube.
• I’ve learned about the negative impacts of stress on diabetes.
• I learned to think of myself as more than a pre-existing condition from Jewels Doskicz.

Q. If you have been here before, what has been the most memorable, helpful, or important #DCDE chat for you?

A. Diabetes online community:
• I liked the one on what to expect during a hospital stay.
• Chats that included discussion on navigating reducing carbs, managing stress, and bolusing for protein.
• One of our most important chats was about #insulin4all, a campaign that pushes for access to diabetes supplies, care, and treatment for all, with T1International.
• Chats with Dr. Gary, therapist and patient advocate, and Adam Brown, senior editor at diaTribe News, have been memorable for me.

Join this conversation by commenting below, or check out other #DCDE discussions on Twitter. To be a part of the diabetes online community check out some of the tweets under #doc and consider what you could add to the conversation with your own tweets!