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Our New Study with King’s College Makes Link Between Strong Relationships and Better Diabetes Management

Published in Press Releases on March 8th 2019

Tavistock Relationships’ new research adds weight to the importance of couple relationships in helping improve psychological and physical conditions for type 1 diabetes sufferers.

The research critically highlights the use of a couple relationship as a valuable ‘resource’, especially where one partner experiencing health difficulties in our new clinical analysis.

The study, entitled 'Couples living with type 1 diabetes: An integrative review of the impacts on health and wellbeing', conducted at Kings’ College and Tavistock Relationships, suggested that couples in which one partner has diabetes, may be helped by receiving relationship support in addition to other forms of treatments currently available for people living with diabetes.

This work, published in the Journal of Health Psychology, suggests that maintaining a resilient and good quality relationship may be important in terms of the physical and psychological outcomes for people living with diabetes. In fact, nurturing healthy relationships predicted better diabetes management.

A quote from the journal abstract explains the methodology:

“The impacts of type 1 diabetes and relationship factors on health and wellbeing of both persons with diabetes and partners (T1D partners) had not previously been investigated.

Integrative review methods evaluated the evidence. From 323 titles, we included 24 studies involving 16,083 persons with diabetes and 1,020 T1D partners. Studies were quantitative (n = 13), qualitative (n = 9) and mixed methods (n = 2). Maintaining resilient, good quality, intimate relationships optimises physical and psychological outcomes for persons with diabetes.

Partners experience disturbed sleep and, while general psychological health is maintained, distress surrounding hypoglycaemia is overwhelming for over a third of partners. Nurturing quality relationships could reap significant health benefits.”

You can read the full research article here.

CEO Andrew Balfour said:

“The research evidence on couple relationships and diabetes/blood glucose control has been relatively sparse, but this systematic review of those studies which do exist (Trief 2001, 2006 and Fisher 2004) indicates that the quality of such relationships may be very important in managing the emotional and physical challenges of living with diabetes.”

Whilst further research on this important area is clearly needed, this review of the evidence suggests that, in order to optimise physical and psychological outcomes for people living with diabetes, directors of public health, health and social care commissioners, and health and well-being boards should place couple relationship support centre stage as they undertake joint strategic needs assessments and prepare their commissioning plans.”


About Tavistock Relationships

Established in 1948, Tavistock Relationships is a registered charity internationally renowned for delivering and developing advanced practice, training and research in therapeutic and psycho-educational approaches to support couples.

Working from two London bases (Warren Street and New Street) as well as operating a nationally available online service, Tavistock Relationships has over 100 professionals providing an effective and highly-regarded form of couples’ counselling and psychotherapy.

Last year, Tavistock Relationships held nearly 20,000 therapy sessions, helping thousands of people with their relationships. The charity received very positive feedback, with more than 93% of its clients saying they would certainly rate the organisation’s services as good. and would recommend it’s services.

For more press information contact:

John Fenna, Head of Marketing & Communications
T: 020 7380 1974, E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Paula Scott, PR consultant
T: 07932 740221, E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Debbie Walker, PR Consultant
T: 077486 40577, E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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