Current recommendations and considerations for psychosocial and psychoeducational support of adolescents with Type 1 diabetes

Author(s): Deborah Christie

Living with diabetes requires an individual to follow a regimen that focuses on balancing diet, activity and medication 24 h a day 7 days a week. Reducing psychological distress associated with poor glycemic control has proven to be a challenge. Approaches that focus on increasing knowledge/skills, addressing psychosocial issues and improving self-management behaviors demonstrate modest short-term improvements. Multifaceted, individually tailored interventions that address the inter-relatedness of the various aspects of diabetes management and include multiple components (e.g., emotional, social and family targets alongside behavioral goals) appear to be the most effective. However, limited long‑term changes suggest a need for continuous support delivered by a multidisciplinary diabetes team rather than the delivery of any particular one-off short-term intervention. This review describes individual, group and family psychosocial and psychoeducational interventions that address psychological wellbeing and glycemic control in adolescents living with diabetes.

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