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Newly diagnosed – things to help

Managing diabetes can be difficult, but you can still do the things you enjoy.

When you get diagnosed

When you are diagnosed, your diabetes team should give you:

  • a blood glucose meter (glucometer) and a ketone meter
  • a continuous glucose monitor
  • small needles called lancets for pricking your finger
  • a lancet device (finger picker) to hold the lancets
  • a 'sharps bin' for throwing away used needles
  • test strips
  • insulin pen
  • needles

These items will help you check your blood glucose levels and inject insulin.

Living with type 1 diabetes


Most people with type 1 diabetes will take 2 types of insulin:

  • insulin that you take once or twice a day
  • insulin that you take with food or drink

Learn more about insulin.

Blood glucose levels

Check your blood glucose levels regularly.

Learn more about:

It's important your family and friends know what to do if you have a hypo and you cannot help yourself. They should give you an injection of glucagon or call 112 or 999 if you're not responding to them.

What to do if you have a hypo


Your diabetes team may ask you to check your ketones when you are first diagnosed.

Learn more about ketones

Check-ups and appointments

You should expect to have regular appointments with your hospital diabetes team once you have a diagnosis of type 1 diabetes.

If you have any concerns about your diabetes, contact your diabetes team.

Diabetes check-ups

This is a meeting with your care team to see how you are managing diabetes in your day-to-day life. You can discuss issues or concerns you may have and plan for supporting your care going forward.

These should be every 6 months, or more often when you are first diagnosed.

Your care team will do some checks, including:

  • HbA1c test - this checks your blood glucose levels for the past 8 to 12 weeks
  • your blood cholesterol
  • blood and urine tests to check your kidneys are working well (kidney function)
  • your weight
  • your blood pressure
  • your 'time in range' if you wear a glucose monitor

The check-up is also a chance for you and your team to discuss your blood glucose readings.

Retina screening

Diabetic RetinaScreen offers yearly free, retina screening to people with diabetes age 12 and older.

Learn more about diabetic retina screening

Foot check-up

A nurse or a foot specialist (podiatrist) should check the blood supply to your feet at least once a year. They will check your feet for numbness, corns, ulcers and infections.

Speak to your diabetes team if your feet haven't been checked.

Looking after your feet

Page last reviewed: 17 October 2023
Next review due: 17 October 2026

This project has received funding from the Government of Ireland’s Sláintecare Integration Fund 2019 under Grant Agreement Number 9.