Find Success With DSMES Services

Woman at a laptop on a telehealth call with a patient

DSMES services provided through telehealth can have life-saving benefits with added convenience.

Hear from real participants who received DSMES services and found ways to manage their diabetes.

Whether you’re new to diabetes or you’ve had it for years, diabetes self-management education and support (DSMES) services can help you manage your diabetes in a way that fits your life.

When you receive DSMES services, you will:

  • Work with a diabetes care and education specialist to set and track your goals.
  • Learn how to use knowledge, skills, and tools to build confidence and emotional strength to manage diabetes.
  • Practice how to fit diabetes care into all parts of life.
  • Find ways to get support (in person and online) from your family, friends, community, and health care team.

Plus, telehealth options can provide added flexibility to make it easier to stay connected to your diabetes care and education specialist and your entire health care team! Telehealth is a safe and secure way to have a health care visit remotely using technology. You can talk to your provider over video and send messages and images to your health care team. You may also be able to use apps on your phone to send your blood sugar, food intake, and physical activity tracking to your provider.

Not sure how DSMES services may help you? Read below to hear from real participants who received DSMES services and found ways to manage their diabetes to fit their real life.

April, DSMES participant
“They are saving my life and giving me a chance to keep my unborn child safe.” — April

April

April, a DSMES participant

Hannah

Hannah, a diabetes care and education specialist

April has type 2 diabetes and found out she was pregnant last year. After her doctor referred her to DSMES services, she had a telehealth visit with Hannah, a diabetes care and education specialist.  Hannah listened to April’s experience with her diabetes management and then shared with April how different foods and physical activity can affect her blood sugar. It was during the visit when April confided in Hannah that she wasn’t taking her insulin because she couldn’t afford the prescription.

Hannah worked with April’s pharmacist and connected April to a patient assistance program where she could find cost-savings options for her medicines.

A few months after meeting with Hannah, April felt more confident in her ability to care for herself and her growing baby. Her blood sugar also decreased over 200 points, and it kept improving. “I’m even more encouraged to keep doing better after seeing these results,” she said. April is grateful for DSMES and her diabetes care team.

William, DSMES participant
“I saw a dramatic difference in my blood sugar levels.” — William

William

William, a DSMES participant

Casey

Casey, a diabetes care and education specialist

William was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes when he was 18 years old. He took medicine to help maintain his blood sugar levels, but it became harder to manage his diabetes as he became an adult. When William started insulin therapy 3 years ago, he received a referral for DSMES services. This was the first diabetes management service William ever received.

William’s diabetes care and education specialist, Casey, helped him better understand his diabetes and worked with him on steps he could take to have a healthier lifestyle that would fit his home and work life. “I saw a dramatic difference in my blood sugar levels,” William said after working with Casey.

Everyone at the diabetes care center in South Carolina where William met Casey was instrumental in William’s health improvement. “Without the [DSMES services of the] diabetes center, I would be in serious trouble,” he said.

Mary, DSMES participant
“I have a full support team that set me up for success with a healthy lifestyle.” — Mary (not pictured)

Janet and Susan

Janet and Susan (left to right), both diabetes care and education specialists

Mary was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes after going to the hospital because of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA). DKA is a serious diabetes complication that can happen when the body produces acids called ketones, which can build up to dangerous levels in the body.

With a referral for DSMES services from her doctor, Mary met with Susan and Janet, two diabetes care and education specialists in South Carolina, to learn how to manage her diabetes.

Susan and Janet talked with Mary about insulin, carb counting, continuous glucose monitors, and insulin pumps and pens. They also helped Mary set goals for making healthier food choices, shared recipes, and supported her in applying for financial assistance.

Everyone Mary worked with was knowledgeable and professional. “They set me up for success through means of a healthy lifestyle,” Mary said. “A very big thank you to all who have helped me on my journey.”

Tess, DSMES participant
“With my husband away, I couldn’t leave my kids at home alone. Telehealth appointments let me meet with my diabetes care and education specialist while my kids slept upstairs.” — Tess (not pictured)

Lori

Lori, a diabetes care and education specialist

Telehealth allowed Lori, a diabetes care and education specialist in Florida, to meet virtually with Tess, who was diagnosed with gestational diabetes (diabetes while pregnant). Tess received important information on how to check her blood sugar and how to count carbs. The telehealth option let Lori talk with Tess at home early in the morning while her children were still asleep.

Lori then emailed materials to Tess and recommended other smartphone apps she could download to help keep track of her carb intake. “I’m very thankful for Lori and the services she provided,” Tess said.

From the Comfort of Home

If you’re not able to meet with a diabetes care and education specialist in person, telehealth options like the ones that Lori and Tess used may be the right choice for you. You can work with your health care team to get real-time advice for managing your diabetes. Telehealth may include:

  • Videoconference.
  • Telephone.
  • Text.
  • Secure messaging through apps.
  • Email.

Telehealth allows you to receive the critical care you need and get answers to your questions, all from the comfort of your home.

Don’t delay! Find success with DSMES services so that you can take good care of yourself while managing your diabetes. Ask a health care provider or visit diabeteseducator.org to learn more.

Page last reviewed: November 8, 2021