Social Support Reduces Diabetes Distress

by Karishma Abhishek on Nov 28 2020 3:08 PM

Social Support Reduces Diabetes Distress
Lack of adequate social support hampers one’s behavior to cope with the management of type 2 diabetes, as per a study published in The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association. This is attributable to diabetes-related distress, especially among vulnerable populations.
The study utilized established clinical scales to measure perceived social support and perceived distress related to diabetes. Results demonstrated that increase in perceived social support significantly reduced diabetes-related distress.

"Too often diabetes treatment is understood as a simple process of taking medications and monitoring blood sugar. In reality, diabetes is a chronic condition that requires a great deal of mental and emotional energy, which when depleted, can impair care," says Clipper Young, PharmD, MPH, associate professor and a clinical pharmacist at Touro University California College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Few studies also report that diabetes-related mortality and morbidity are highest among people with lower socioeconomic status. This was demonstrated by a study conducted at Solano County Family Health Services Clinics in Vallejo and Fairfield, California. It involved 101 participants between 40 and 80 years of age. Approximately 75% of the participants reported an annual income of less than $20,000.

With the consequential effects of social support on diabetes-related distress, it is therefore required for clinicians to optimize diabetes management with a focus on perceived social support. This would result in better treatment outcomes and reduce the risk of diabetes-related complications.