How Involved Should My Family Be In My Diabetes Treatment?

Dr. Patrick Ober answers the question: 'How Involved Should My Family Be?'

ByABC News
November 9, 2007, 2:56 PM

— -- Question:How Involved Should My Family Be In My Diabetes Treatment?

Answer:If someone has diabetes, the truth of the matter is everybody in the family has diabetes, not officially, but certain indirectly, because they're all affected by the individual with diabetes. And there are a number of ways that family members can become involved, and they actually should become involved in the care of a family member with diabetes.

And it starts with the simple basic things. Is the family eating a healthy diet, sitting down together at appropriate times and having a thoughtful meal is one of the better things any of us can do.

Most of us probably don't get as much physical activity as we should. For people with diabetes, that's very, very important. And any way in which family members can get together and encourage a person with diabetes, or anyone else in the family for that matter, to exercise more, will be to anybody's benefit.

There are a lot of challenges with diabetes, you need to prick fingers, check blood sugar regularly, and most of us, if we had to do it, would prefer not to do it, so encouragement by family members that person many of those sorts of things are also an important part of diabetes therapy.

And sometimes it's just a lot of pills; it's just a lot medicine; it's just a lot of things to keep up with. And one of the most important things for anybody with a chronic illness is a support system, and there's no more important support system anywhere for anybody, than their family.

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