There’s no right or wrong way to react to a diabetes diagnosis. Some people experience shock or guilt, while others feel worried, fear, or acceptance. However you may feel about having diabetes, you might be wondering, “what should I ask at my first diabetes appointment?” Read on to find out the best questions to ask your doctor so you can stay on top of healthy living with diabetes.

1. Do I have to poke my finger and check my blood sugar every day?

Poking your finger to check your blood sugars may sound scary at first. Blood sugar checks are one of the most critical parts of monitoring your diabetes. With the help of your diabetes Care Team, you’ll get the support you need to gain confidence in checking your blood sugars.

At first, it may be unclear how often you should check them because everyone monitors their diabetes differently. Together, you and your doctor can create a treatment plan that works for you. Depending on your individual treatment plan and other factors, you may be eligible for continuous glucose monitoring systems that don’t require as much poking to get blood sugar readings.

2. What type of lifestyle changes will I need to make?

Google searching can open the floodgates of endless information on diabetes that can be confusing or misleading. Get the correct and reliable information from your diabetes care team about the lifestyle changes you can make to stay healthy with diabetes.

Adding more fruits and vegetables to your meals, exercising regularly, prioritizing sleep, managing stress, limiting alcohol intake, and avoiding smoking are lifestyle changes that can help your diabetes.

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3. What are the long-term complications associated with diabetes?

If your blood sugars remain high for a long time, it can put you at risk for kidney disease, eye diseases, damage to the heart and blood vessels, gum disease, nerve damage, and poor circulation. When diabetes is untreated, the level of sugar in the blood becomes high. As your blood is pumped all over your body, it can cause possible damage to other areas of the body over time.

Your doctor and Care Team can talk with you about the importance of an annual eye and foot exam, kidney tests, regular dental visits, and routine blood work to keep tabs on your diabetes and prevent long-term complications.

4. Will I need to take medication to manage my diabetes?

Metformin is the most common and safe medication for most people with prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. That said, diabetes treatment plans vary from person to person, so your doctor will help you understand what medications are best for you and how to take them safely.

5. What should I do to take care of my diabetes when I am sick?

Everyone gets sick from time to time, but when you have diabetes, being sick can impact your blood sugar levels. You can prepare yourself for future sick days by partnering with your doctor to develop a sick day plan. A sick day plan should include instructions on taking your medications, what to eat and drink when you’re sick, how often to test your blood sugars, and what signs to look for if you need urgent medical attention.

6. What should I do if I feel I’m struggling with my diabetes?

A life with diabetes can be physically and mentally demanding, so if you ever feel burnt out or sad, know that these emotions are common. Your doctor and diabetes care team can help connect you with support groups and other mental health resources so you can feel yourself again. 9am.health has Diabetes Specialists available to offer realistic suggestions on making life with diabetes less stressful and more manageable for you.

Knowing the right questions to ask during your first doctor’s appointment doesn’t always come easy. Stay on top of your diabetes diagnosis by having these questions written down or saved on your smartphone to get the answers you need to take good care of your health. Visit our homepage to learn more about living your best with diabetes.