A new mood tool has been launched to better treat people with diabetes who may be feeling low or depressed.
Diabetes UK’s Mood Information Prescription is a one-page document which has been developed to help start a conversation between someone with diabetes and their healthcare professional.
It also provides key signs of depression and anxiety for people to look out for and suggestions about how those affected can make steps to feel better.
According to the NICE, people who have a chronic health problem, such as diabetes, are three times more likely to suffer from depression. Within the diabetes community, depression is also the most common psychiatric disorder.
Treating people with diabetes and depression has become even more important, since research has shown that depression can directly impact the person’s ability to manage their diabetes correctly.
According to IDDT, a leading diabetes charity, up to three quarters of cases of depression in people with diabetes may go undiagnosed. It is thought this is because many people believe the depressed feelings they are experiencing are normal symptoms of diabetes.
Diabetes UK said it is now working with IT systems within primary care to find a way to embed the mood tool, which will mean it automatically pops up for certain patients. It is hoped this will speed up treatment and increase the effectiveness of the intervention.
Diabetes UK senior healthcare engagement officer Louise Cripps said: “The Diabetes and Mood Information Prescription helps healthcare professionals provide psychological support to patients which is vital for many people living with diabetes.
“We want this new tool to initiate a conversation about emotions and encourage a person with diabetes to think about what they can do to improve their mood.
“Initiating such conversations can be difficult but this focus on psychological wellbeing can help a person manage their condition, minimise their risk of developing serious complications and can lead to better clinical outcomes for their diabetes.”