10 People Who Can Help You Manage Type 2 Diabetes
As you begin the challenge of managing your type 2 diabetes, these are the healthcare providers you will need to have on your team.
By Margaret O'Malley
Medically Reviewed by Kelly Kennedy, RD
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You have figured out by now that taking control of your diabetes means managing the level of glucose in your blood. Making that happen involves creating a diet, exercise, medication, and glucose-monitoring plan — and enlisting the help and support of a battery of professionals to show you how to get on track and help you stay there.
Here’s a list of the healthcare providers you will need to have on your team as you take up the challenge of type 2 diabetes. Your primary-care physician or a certified diabetes educator (CDE) can help you make sure that all these professionals are coordinating your care effectively. Each member of your team will be counting on you to be open and honest about how you feel and how successfully you are following your diet, exercise, and medication routines.
Your Type 2 Diabetes Care Team
Primary-care physician:Your family doctor will monitor your general health and help coordinate your care as you take responsibility for your type 2 diabetes.
Endocrinologist:This doctor treats diabetes and other diseases of the endocrine glands, which produce the hormones that control physical functions and which the insulin-producing pancreas is part of. This specialist can help you learn to monitor your blood-glucose levels and can prescribe and monitor medications to control them.
Nutritionist or registered dietitian:These experts in nutrition will help you understand the relationship between food and diabetes and help you create an eating plan that works for you and your particular lifestyle while taking into account how physically active you are.
Pharmacist:This professional can help you understand your medications and how they work and will make sure that you are not taking other medications that can interfere with your diabetes treatment.
Certified diabetes educator (CDE):This certified healthcare professional will teach and support you and your family as you take responsibility for your diabetes self-care plan. A CDE can teach you how to monitor your blood glucose and how to inject insulin if you need it.
Dentist:Taking care of your teeth and gums is vital for those with diabetes. Elevated sugar levels in your saliva caused by diabetes put you at greater risk for developing infections and other dental problems.
Podiatrist:This practitioner specializes in problems in the lower legs and feet and will help you watch for and care for any complications in your lower extremities.
Ophthalmologist:Your eye specialist will help you maintain healthy vision and monitor you for any complications caused by diabetes.
Social worker, psychologist, or psychiatrist:These mental-health professionals can help you and your family deal with the emotional toll a chronic disease can take.
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