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Last Updated: Nov 26, 2019

Tips To Battle The Impact Of Diabetes On Marriage!

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Dr. Pradeep Gadge0Diabetologist
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A diagnosis of diabetes changes life for the diabetic as well as for a non-diabetic spouse or partner. 

Diabetes, which is characterised by elevated glucose levels due to the body's inability to produce sufficient insulin or use it effectively, can have serious health consequences like heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, vision loss, and nerve damage that can lead to numbness in the foot and possibly amputation if unnoticed wounds on the foot do not heal. A person diagnosed with diabetes quickly learns that regulating his or her glucose on a daily basis is critical. Most often, this is done by changing diets and exercise habits.

One of the most frequently asked question pertaining to family & diabetes is whether a partner's diabetes can affect their marital life. 

Yes! diabetes comes with an increased risk for some physical problems such as erectile dysfunction for men and hypertension and weight gain due to insulin therapy for both men and women. All this can interfere with sexual intimacy. Navigating these changes in the marriage is just as important as managing the dietary and exercise requirements.

Research shows that for diabetes, as for other chronic illnesses, a partner's support makes a big difference to the patient's management of the disease. A partner's support and coping as a team, gives the diabetic more confidence in his or her ability to stick to diets and to exercise and to gain better overall health. The quality of the marriage too benefits from this type of joint coping.

So, here are six ways to tackle diabetes as a team: 

  • talk openly about the condition
  •  both partners must learn about diabetes management
  •  they must set goals and solve problems together
  •  the non-diabetic partner must support and encourage new diet and exercise habits.
  •  be patient
  •  get support 

Care of a diabetic is demanding and trying to manage it all alone can lead to burnout. 

Communicating with other family members about the diagnosis and specifying how they can support its management is one way to lessen the load. Similarly, confiding in friends about how diabetes is impacting the couple's life and marriage on a day-to-day basis can be helpful. Talking to other couples where one partner has diabetes can also lessen the caregiver's feelings of loneliness and provide ideas for practical coping strategies. And one can always seek professional help from diabetes educators, medical specialists, dieticians and counselors.

Receiving a diagnosis of diabetes does not have to derail one's life and marriage. Communicating regularly about diabetic care, expressing support and affection, solving problems together and seeking external support can increase the odds of successfully managing diabetes and protecting one's marriage, lifelong.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult a specialist & get answers to your questions!

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