Navigating the Intersection of Diabetes and Mental Health: Importance of Integrated Care for Optimal Health Outcomes

May 12. 2023

One of the most important aspects of our job as healthcare providers at GluCare Health is helping our patients manage their diabetes in a way that not only controls their blood sugar levels but also promotes overall health and well-being. This includes addressing the link between diabetes and mental health, as these conditions often have a significant impact on one another.

The physical and emotional toll of living with a chronic condition, the stress of managing diabetes, and the potential for complications can all contribute to mental health issues.

Recent research has shown that people with diabetes are 2 to 3 times more likely to have depression than people without diabetes. Only 25% to 50% of people with diabetes who have depression get diagnosed and treated. 

The relationship between diabetes and mental health is also bidirectional. Poorly managed diabetes can also have a negative impact on mental health, as patients may feel overwhelmed or discouraged by the challenges of managing their condition. This can make it difficult for individuals to stick to their diabetes management plan and lead to poor glucose control over time.

That is why, at GluCare Health, we believe it’s important to address both diabetes and mental health as part of a comprehensive care plan. We do this is three ways:

  1. In Clinic: We collect mental health information to measure diabetes distress as part of our value based approach following the Diabetes Standard Set provided by the International Consortium for Health Measurement Outcomes (ICHOM).
  2. Remotely: We look at trends that can be captured from both digital biomarkers, such as Heart Rate Variability, which has a strong correlation to mental health, in addition to collecting patient generated surveys throughout our continuous management of patients.
  3. Every patient has access to their own personal coach via our app. Coaches act as an accountability partner and can help support mental health issues patients may be facing. Our coaches are always with our patients throughout the journey of their diabetes management.

We also  work closely with mental health professionals to identify and treat any mental health issues, as well as providing support and resources to help patients effectively manage their diabetes. For our patients, this may include education on healthy eating and physical activity, as well as providing access to tools and technology that can help them better track and manage their diabetes.

We also encourage regular check-ins and follow-up appointments to monitor diabetes control and address any issues that may arise. Additionally, we provide support groups and mental health resources for individuals to help them cope with the emotional burden of living with diabetes.

It’s also important to recognize that every individual is unique and their diabetes and mental health journey can be different. So, personalized care plans are crucial to ensure the best possible outcomes.

In conclusion, at GluCare Health, we understand the critical importance of addressing both diabetes and mental health for our patients. By working closely with mental health professionals and providing personalized support, we can help our patients manage their diabetes and improve their overall quality of life. We encourage all individuals with diabetes to talk to their healthcare provider about how to support their mental health as part of their diabetes management plan.

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