Support Groups – Why Should I Join?
Support groups are available for almost any type of medical condition; they are even available for family members and caretakers! Finding a support group for diabetes is not a difficult task. In fact, many diabetics find that after finding and joining a support group, care of their condition is easier due to a sense of community with other diabetics.
How Do I Find a Support Group?
So, where to find a diabetes support group? Perusing the local newspaper is a great way to find support groups offered in the area. Searching the internet may also yield results. Calling a local hospital or even your primary care provider may turn up some resources. If you are a patient of a certified diabetes educator (CDE), they may run support groups, or can point you in the right direction.
Now That I’ve Located a Support Group, Why Should I Join?
Support groups can be helpful for people with any type of chronic condition. The biggest reason they are helpful is that they provide a sense of community. Often, a person with a chronic condition may feel that they are alone in their battles. This is especially true if the person doesn’t know anyone with their condition. However, a support group draws together people with their condition – these people all have different backgrounds, jobs, income levels, support system. Despite their differences, they have in common their shared condition and the support of each other.
The group atmosphere is inviting for diabetics; it provides a forum for eliciting advice. For example, a diabetic may discuss their difficulty with remembering to perform daily foot care. In this circumstance, the group members help each other by discussing ways that they remember to perform daily foot care. Advice may not always be needed; sometimes sharing stories that cannot be shared with family members or friends can be done in this atmosphere. For example, a diabetic may lament that their family does not support their dietary needs and restrictions. Sharing stories can be therapeutic.
The Bottom Line
Locating a support group is an easy process. Joining the support group will yield a sense of community by allowing the members to assist each other and lend an ear when needed.