Polls: What Glu Users Struggle to Discuss About Type 1 Diabetes with Doctors

Girl and mother listening to doctor

-Linda Crasco/Linda C

When you talk with your medical care provider about your type 1 diabetes, does your discussion go beyond your A1C numbers to talk about the impact diabetes is having on your life? We recently asked the Glu community three poll questions about this, and the results suggest that while the majority of Glu members feel comfortable bringing up difficult subjects with their doctors, many others feel there are barriers to communication.

Here were the three poll questions discussed:

1. It’s hard to have your needs met if no one asks you about them. In one poll, we asked Glu members, “How often does your diabetes health provider ask you if your needs were met during the appointment?”

Just under half (49.9 percent) of 325 respondents answered “Always” or “Often.”

But….

Just under 40 percent of respondents responded “Never” or “Occasionally.”

2. Sometimes, people feel uncomfortable broaching certain subjects. In another poll with 208 respondents, we asked Glu members what topic they would like to discuss with their health care provider that they don’t feel comfortable discussing.

Some 20 percent of all respondents said burnout was the toughest subject to broach; diabetes burnout is often characterized as when a patient is so discouraged by the task of managing blood glucose levels that they stop doing some or all aspects of their self-management.

-In the same poll, financial issues were the second-most chosen topic (10.1 percent) Glu members said was difficult to discuss. 

3. Another poll of 180 respondents asked, “If you have or had an issue in paying for your diabetes supplies, how comfortable do you/did you feel letting your doctor know?” The poll offered a numbered scale for answers, from “1 – Not comfortable at all” to “5 – Very comfortable”.

While almost half of all respondents chose “5 – Very comfortable,”, roughly a quarter of respondents chose either “1” or “2”, showing strong discomfort in bringing up the subject.

These survey results may provide some preliminary evidence that a sizeable segment of the Glu community find communication with their health care provider to be a barrier, even at times when open communication is most needed.

Thanks to the Glu community for answering our poll questions and sharing their perspectives and insights. You can sign up for Glu and answer to answer our daily poll questions and read more about type 1 diabetes by clicking here.

 

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