People with diabetes need a complete healthcare team to help them develop the most effective diabetes self-management plan. A diabetes educator can help you manage this chronic disease. Find out how to work with a diabetes educator to achieve optimum health.
- A diabetes educator is an important member of your healthcare team. An educator works with you to create a plan to stay healthy and provides ongoing support to make that plan a part of your daily life. Diabetes education is a recognized part of your overall care. A diabetes educator is usually covered by health insurance plans and Medicare. Check with your specific plan for exact information.
- While diabetes does not have a cure, a diabetes educator will teach you how to live as healthy as possible with this disease. You will learn about proper eating, physical activity, taking medications and monitoring your condition as well as reducing certain risks. An educator helps you manage diabetes more effectively for a healthier lifestyle and more positive outcomes.
- Talk to your insurance company about what type of diabetes education they cover. Typically most plans cover up to 10 hours of diabetes education within the first year. You will be allowed 2 hours of refresher education every year after the initial year. You may choose to meet with a diabetes educator one-on-one or in a group or class. Ask your primary doctor for a recommendation and prescription to a diabetes educator.
- A diabetes educator can help you overcome barriers you may face when trying to manage your diabetes. The first step is to help you understand what diabetes is and how it affects you. They can help you adopt healthy behaviors. An educator also explains how various diabetes medications work and how to inject your insulin.
- Talk to your diabetes educator about what types of food are best. An educator can help you plan tasty meals that fit into your budget and lifestyle. You can also discuss physical activities that should be included in your daily routine.
- Monitoring your blood sugar is an essential part of any effective diabetes self-management plan. An educator often discusses diabetes supplies to help you monitor your blood sugar based on your unique circumstances. The educator may also recommend tools such as apps and charts to help you stay on track and monitor your progress.
- Sticking to a diabetes self-management plan is crucial but can also become stressful. A diabetes educator provides essential tips for minimizing stress and solving issues as they arise.
- Education is the cornerstone of good diabetes management. Ask questions about nutrition, monitoring, medication and exercise as well as the stress associated with diabetes. Being educated makes it simpler to control your diabetes rather than letting it control you. Diabetes education is an ongoing process that should be repeated every year or two with a diabetes nurse educator or nutritionist so you are always up to date.
- Several members of your healthcare team are also diabetes educators including your physician, nutritionist and exercise physiologist as well as a certified diabetes educator. It takes a team effort to teach you about diabetes and the best ways to treat it. Establish measurable and achievable diabetes self-management goals. Short-term and long-term goals help you to attain overall well-being. For example, a short-term goal is losing two pounds a week. A long-term goal is losing twenty pounds in six months.
Learning about diabetes is the best way to develop an effective self-management plan. Work with a diabetes educator to find out more about how to treat your condition. Knowledge is power when it comes to controlling diabetes.