Endocrinologists are medical doctors who specialize in treatment and care of the endocrine system. People with diabetes should see their endocrinologist at least once per year.
Internal Medicine Specialist
Internal medicine specialists are doctors who specialize in the prevention, detection, and treatment of adult diseases. People with diabetes may see an internal medicine specialist who specializes in diabetes as part of their diabetes management.
Cardiologists are medical doctors who specialize in the treatment and care of the heart. People with diabetes are at an increased risk of developing cardiovascular problems and may see a cardiologist at some point.
Registered Dietitians are food and nutrition experts. They educate people on eating for good health and treatment of diseases. Dietitians can also assist you with weight loss and becoming physically active. For people with diabetes, dietitians can be helpful when learning how to adjust your diet for blood sugar control and when starting carbohydrate counting.
Pharmacists are the medication management experts of your healthcare team. In Alberta, pharmacists are able to renew prescriptions, prescribe medications, start you on a new medication, and administer injections. People with diabetes can rely on their pharmacists to explain their medications and for assistance in managing their diabetes.
A registered nurse can play many roles in your care. They can teach you about managing your diabetes, as well as help advocate for your goals with the rest of the healthcare team.
Managing your diabetes can take more than just a physical toll; it can also take an emotional one. A clinical psychologist can help you navigate your feelings and concerns around your diagnosis and day-to-day management struggles. For more about how a psychologist can help you with your diabetes view this fact sheet from the Canadian Psychological Association.
An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor that specializes in the care and treatment of the eyes. Eye disease (retinopathy) is a common complication of diabetes, which can lead to blindness. People with diabetes should have an eye exam by an ophthalmologist or optometrist every year.
An optometrist is a healthcare professional that specializes in the care of the eyes, however they are not medical doctors. People with diabetes should have an eye exam by an ophthalmologist or optometrist every year. Most people with diabetes can be followed by an optometrist, and will be referred to an ophthalmologist when the eye disease becomes severe enough that it requires treatment.
For more information on optometry, ophthalmology, and diabetes you can read this fact sheet on Eye Health and Diabetes.
Podiatrists are doctors that specialize in the care and treatment of the foot and ankle. Foot care is a very important part of diabetes management as it can cause peripheral neuropathy, or a loss of sensation in the hands and feet, which can lead to many severe complications including gangrene and amputation. People with diabetes should examine their feet regularly and see a podiatrist if they have any concerns about their feet and ankles. Visit the Canadian Foot Clinic website for more information on podiatry and foot care.
A social worker can be an invaluable resource in managing your diabetes. Social workers can help you with managing the financial burden diabetes care can place on you and your family. They can assist you in planning the best way to control your diabetes within your lifestyle. Social workers can also help you with family and workplace struggles that may arise related to your diabetes. For more on how a social worker can help, visit the website for the National Association of Social Workers.