Diabetes is a contributor to stress for several reasons:
- It is a condition that is chronic and lifelong
- Symptoms are usually disruptive
- It requires you to alter your lifestyle
- Treatment of this condition can cause side effects
- For many the disease can undermine self-confidence
Stressful situations associated with diabetes can upset the balance of your blood glucose levels.
- Hyperglycemic effect on off stress hormones
Whenever you are stressed, your body start secreting stress hormones like: catecholamines,glucagon,cortisol and growth hormones.
These hormones can cause your sugar levels to rise in order to provide your body with the required energy to respond to the stressor.
In diabetics, this rise in sugar levels can persist and complicate the condition especially those who are on insulin. Consequently, stress can lead to hyperglycemia or hypoglycemia.A stressful life can lead to lack of motivation as well.
Similarly, severe stress can also weaken your motivation to participate in your treatment, hence reduce your chances of working towards improving your blood glucose.
How you react to stress is based on your ability to cope and resist the situation.
Some physical signs include:
- Sweaty palms
- Increased heart rate
- Menstrual problems
Some psychological signs include:
- Inability to express emotions
And some behavioural signs include:
- Increased binge eating and drinking
- Loss of memory
Some common reactions to stress:
- Withdrawing from others, feeling depressed.
- Dramatizing and denial of your condition
- Excessive reliance on alcohol and binge eating or even drugs like sleeping pills.
If you do find yourself facing such a challenge then as for help. It does not mean you are weak but is a way to help you deal with your condition so that things don’t get out of hand. Also have a glucometer with you at all times to keep a track of your sugar levels, and take immediate action when need be.