Mythbusting: Insulin Therapy is My Fault

It is extremely common for people with type 2 diabetes who are being switched to insulin therapy to blame themselves or to assign personal fault to themselves because they failed to properly manage their diabetes. They may even regard being switched to insulin as punitive—punishment for not taking their medications properly, for not exercising, or for not maintaining the perfect diet.

The reality is that type 2 diabetes is a progressive disease. In other words, being switched to insulin therapy isn't an example of your doctor punishing the patient, it is an inevitable outcome of the disease running its natural course. It has little to do with a patient's personal shortcomings.

Insulin-producing beta-cells in the pancreas are going to deteriorate and cause insulin deficiency. This is a consequence of time. The pancreas simply cannot keep up with the body's requirements for insulin, regardless of the steps taken by type 2 patients to manage the disease.

In short, insulin therapy is normal. It is effective in replacing the lost insulin production. All patients want to achieve the best possible blood glucose levels while experiencing the fewest side effects. Insulin therapy can do that. It is not a way of punishing the patient for poor adherence.

Photo: Denver's Diet Doctor