Do people with diabetes who need to talk want to talk?

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Our objective was to determine whether people with diabetes who ask for psychological support are those who are experiencing clinically significant levels of psychological distress.


Three hundred people with diabetes were asked to complete psychometrically validated questionnaires that assessed subjective need and objective psychological distress.


High levels of psychological distress were reported: 25% reported depressive symptomatology, 41% reported clinically significant levels of anxiety and 51% reported some binge eating behaviour. Participants also indicated a desire to talk to diabetes professionals about various problem areas in diabetes. Those reporting psychological distress, especially depression, were most likely to indicate a desire to talk to someone about living with diabetes.


Those who want to talk are those who need to talk. Future service development issues should acknowledge the needs and expressed wishes of service users.

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