Type 2 diabetes support groups are community or online organizations where people living with the disease can share information, find understanding, and give or receive emotional support.
These resources provide an opportunity to share personal experiences and find tips for managing type 2 diabetes. They can be empowering, giving people tools to improve their symptoms and quality of life.
Additionally, individuals can benefit from relationship building with others in a similar situation.
The following article discusses online and in-person groups and support programs for type 2 diabetes. It also describes how a person can find or choose a group.
The internet is a valuable tool for people with type 2 diabetes.
Individuals can find online support groups that offer general discussions about daily living and health habits and specific information on managing the health problems that type 2 diabetes can pose.
Carenity is a website-based social network specifically designed for people with chronic conditions, including type 2 diabetes.
Features of this support group include a free social network that includes friends, news feed, discussion boards, and private messaging.
In addition, Carenity publishes high quality medical information and relevant news on medical breakthroughs.
To help members manage their health, Carenity publishes videos and expert articles, patient testimonials and interviews with physicians.
DiabetesSisters offers a variety of education and support services to help women living with type 2 diabetes live healthier and more fulfilled lives.
Its aim is to foster a bond between women and provide a space where members feel comfortable sharing information, useful advice and stories of hope.
DiabetesSisters started in 2008 after the founder was diagnosed with diabetes as a teenager in the early 1990s. She realized how little information or support existed for women with diabetes, and she sought to change that.
T2D Health Line
T2D Healthline is an app-based support group, and claims to be the number one type 2 diabetes community.
He offers round-the-clock advice and support from people who understand the challenges of type 2 diabetes as they also live with the disease.
Diabetes Forum is the UK’s largest diabetes support group, with over 300,000 members.
Although based in the UK, the group invites everyone to ask questions, find support and share their experiences. It is free and easy to use and helps people better understand diabetes.
In-person support groups provide a structured and supportive environment to discuss life with type 2 diabetes. Meetings organized by these groups can help reduce feelings of isolation by providing friendship and companionship.
Defeat the Diabetes Foundation
Defeat Diabetes Foundation (DDF) lists in-person support groups for people with diabetes by state. On its website, people can find meeting locations, age groups that can attend, and contact details.
DDF notes that being a member of a support group is a great way to be proactive in diabetes management. The foundation provides support, advice and information, being an essential tool in the management of diabetes.
Support programs offer a more structured way to get information and support.
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) has a Diabetes Self-Management Education Support Network (DMES) that includes support programs located across the United States. Some are covered by Medicare and Medicare.
Some of the things a DMES program can help include:
- improve knowledge about diabetes
- teach self-care skills, such as meal planning
- provide help with blood sugar monitoring
- empower people to create healthy habits, such as exercise
Those interested in these programs can find one near them by using the ADA search tool.
There are several factors to consider when finding a diabetes support group.
First, it helps to know what a person with diabetes expects from one of these groups. For example, if they want to connect with others, it will be important for a group to allow them to socialize.
On the other hand, if they need more structured support to take care of their health, a program or group that takes care of them directly will be a better choice. It’s a good idea to make a list of top priorities and consider them when researching.
Then individuals should look for groups that match those priorities. They can do this by:
- ask a doctor for recommendations
- ask other people with type 2 diabetes what helps them
- search online
A critical aspect of choosing a support group is whether an online or in-person group and format is more suitable. Both offer their own set of benefits.
One of the advantages of a local group is that members can see the same doctors as the person joining. They will also know more about the resources available in their region. In-person groups can also be better for making friends.
Online support groups, however, are more accessible, especially if someone isn’t feeling well or can’t make it to a meeting in person. In addition, support can be available at any time.
Some people may want to join more than one group to reap the benefits of both types of groups.
If one support group isn’t right for you, you can always try others.
Support groups offer a range of benefits, but for people with type 2 diabetes, they’re especially valuable. This can be a difficult condition to understand and manage in the long run.
People with type 2 diabetes should consider taking their medications, changing their diet, and in some cases changing their lifestyle. In addition to affecting their physical health, it can also impact their mental health.
The authors of a 2019 study found an association between participating in online support groups and better motivation and social support for people with type 2 diabetes. This may reduce feelings of isolation and boost self-esteem. Plus, seeing other people manage their diabetes and live full lives can be an inspiration to others with the disease.
Support groups offer a multitude of benefits to their members, including peer support, encouragement and information. Individuals can access both online and in-person support groups, with each option having its own set of benefits.
There are also structured programs that teach valuable skills needed in managing diabetes, such as blood sugar monitoring and meal planning. If a person has health insurance, they can ask their health insurance provider if they are eligible for such programs.
Individuals can ask a healthcare professional to recommend a support group. Many communities and healthcare teams offer support groups for people living with type 2 diabetes.