The psychological and social factors involving the patient are very influential on outcome. Considerable support and counselling is necessary to help both patient and family cope with the 'distress' of the diagnosis and the discipline required for optimal control of their blood glucose. Reasons for poor dietary compliance and insulin administration must be determined and mobilisation of a supportive multidisciplinary network (where practical) is most helpful. The general practitioner should be the pivot of the team. Joining a self-support group can be very helpful.
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