Let’s Talk About the Psychological Effects of Diabetes


Doctors are trained to make you feel better. We’re great at talking about your physical health history, ordering blood tests, and working hard to get to the bottom of your pain. We piece together a puzzle of symptoms until a clear picture emerges and we’re able to begin treatment.

But, amidst all the talk about prescription blood sugar controls, healing diabetic ulcers, and daily diabetic foot checks, there’s an important aspect of diabetes care that people - doctors included - often overlook: the effect on your mind.

Diabetes and mental health

Board-certified podiatrists Dr. Samantha Boyd, Dr. Hal Ornstein, Dr. Dan Phan, and Dr. Joseph Saka of Affiliated Foot & Ankle Center naturally focus on your feet. Foot care for patients with diabetes is essential and one of our reasons for being. But during Diabetes Awareness Month, we want to take a step back to talk about the equally vital issue of mental health.

If you live with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, you have a daily struggle - sometimes an hourly struggle. You’re dealing with the stress of monitoring your blood sugar, watching what you eat, planning what to eat, and being careful about how much you eat. A kid with diabetes has the added stress of being “different” from other kids, having to leave class to inject insulin into their bruised body. All of this stress can lead to a roller-coaster of emotions:

  • Anger - why me?

  • Frustration - why can’t I just eat what I want right now?

  • Depression - I don’t even have any energy left over to do the things I love.

What to do with your feelings

Diabetes and anger/frustration/depression often go hand in hand. But it’s not a good idea to ignore the symptoms of these mental health issues. They may even make your diabetes symptoms worse. So if you find that you’re often feeling sad, angry, depressed, or out of control about your diabetes, tell your doctor. You can even tell one of us here at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Center, and we’ll be happy to talk to you or refer you to a Monmouth County mental health specialist.

Diabetes affects your body and your mind. Treat them both equally and with good care. For more information, call us at (732) 905-1110 or contact us online for an appointment in Howell or Jackson, New Jersey.