How do I know if I’m doing enough about my type 2 diabetes? 26 February 2021 How will you know if the changes you’ve made after being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes are helping you on the inside? Avoiding complications You know that diabetes can affect different parts of your body such as the heart, eyes, feet and kidneys. The changes within the body can be subtle and you may easily overlook them. You may have made some lifestyle changes or changed your diabetes medication with the aim of preventing diabetes-related complications. You may feel better but how do you know if this is enough? Health checks by your diabetes care team can provide you with this valuable, measurable information. As an adult, the annual cycle of care checklist is a useful tool. It has recommended timeframes between reviews and target ranges. Ongoing research supports these recommendations and at present is best practice in diabetes care. Keep in mind, however, that this checklist is a guide. The timeframes between reviews and the targets recommended must be personalised to suit you. Goals from annual cycle of care Some people use this checklist to develop goals with their health care team. An example of a goal could be to maintain or improve positive health outcomes. Another goal could be to restart the physical activity that helps you maintain healthy blood glucose levels. At the annual review your team might discuss how to achieve your goal. Identify what the barriers are to succeeding and also what supports could help you. Setting a specific, realistic and measurable goal is a great way to start making changes. Early detection of concerns People are surprised with how often certain health checks are recommended. This is to ensure the identification of any health concerns is recognised early. Early detection then provides you with an opportunity to discuss with your health care team the best way to manage and treat the problem. Eye checks, for instance, are recommended at least every two years or more. It is known that 25% – 50% of people with diabetes do not have their eyes examined as recommended. Yet, up to 80% of severe eye problems could be prevented by early detection and treatment. Sharing the information you obtain from carrying out the annual cycle of care checks between your health care team may help you manage your type 2 diabetes. Sharing results may alleviate any concerns your support team has for your wellbeing. It may provide an opportunity to show your gratitude for their involvement in your journey with diabetes. It may also offer you an opportunity to celebrate what you’ve achieved.