Childhood Diabetes and Management

by | Aug 4, 2015 | Uncategorized | 0 comments

Childhood diabetes is one of the most common problems found in school going children. There are several children suffering from diabetes in U.S., and they require proper management strategies to live a healthy life with diabetes.

Diabetes is a group of disease that occurs due to defects in insulin production and action. Diabetes is characterised by high blood glucose levels. Type-1 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes found in children. If your child is diagnosed with diabetes, don’t get overwhelmed or start panicking. Plan a strategy to help your child live healthier and longer with proper diabetes care.

Childhood Diabetes and Management

Causes of childhood diabetes or diabetes type 1:

Type-1 diabetes is also called an autoimmune disease. It means that body’s immune system starts attacking body’s tissue and organs, due to which the islets of Langerhans of Beta cells present in the pancreas stop producing insulin. Due to the low amount of insulin in blood the glucose is not taken up by the nearby cells to produce energy, and it remains in the blood, increasing the blood glucose levels. It is called diabetes mellitus type 1.

The cause of Diabetes mellitus Type-1 occurring in children is not properly understood. It is probably due to genes and some environmental factor. It is not necessary that a child with diabetes has a family history of diabetes.

Childhood diabetes type 1 symptoms:

The few commonly found symptoms of diabetes type 1 in patients are:

• Increased thirst
• Increased frequent urination, including overnight
• Unintended weight loss
• Extreme tiredness
• Too much tummy fans
• Blurred vision
• Headaches
• Behavioural problems

The 4 ‘T’s that you must be aware of the children with diabetes are:

1. Toilet-frequent trips to toilet for urination, extremely frequent diaper wetting and bed-wetting in otherwise non-bed wetting habitual child
2. Thirst- child is being unable to quench its thirst and is taking more fluids than usual
3. Tiredness-child is feeling more tired than usual
4. Thinner-the child loses too much weight

Keep a track of these symptoms to identify if your child is at risk. Diabetes is ignored because most doctors attribute the symptoms to some other illness. So, being a parent if you find some of these unusual symptoms take your child to a specialist doctor and get him checked for diabetes.

It is very necessary to diagnose diabetes in children to avoid diabetic ketoacidosis, so, as soon as your child is diagnosed with diabetes then refer your child to the specialist in child diabetes.

Treatment and management of diabetes in children

Managing diabetes in children is very important as with proper dietary and medicinal care the children with diabetes diagnosed in early age can live longer, and much healthier life than those who diagnosed with diabetes in adulthood.

Diabetes requires an insulin treatment. Take the insulin doses as per the doctor’s prescription only. The child diagnosed would have to take only a small dose of insulin in the first year. Also, take care of the blood sugar levels by properly monitoring the blood sugar levels to avoid the condition of ‘hypo’ or a big drop in blood glucose levels.

Tips for the parents to manage diabetes in their child:

1. Keep measuring the blood sugar levels and on the regular basis and teach your child to monitor their sugar levels once they are old enough to understand.
2. Learn how to administer insulin injection, they are administered in the places of good muscle mass like in the thigh region and abdomen.
3. Keep a glucose pack readily available to counteract low blood sugar condition
4. Know the symptoms of low blood sugar levels and make the child aware of those symptoms also
5. Keep the meals of the child balanced with carbohydrates and fibres and cut them to three times a day.
6. Two to three low-calorie snacks in a day are recommended for the children with diabetes
7. Take sweets in as moderation as possible
8. Regular checkups are advised for the children with diabetes

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Amelia Smith

Nutritionist, herbalist, health and medicine writer and yoga enthusiast, Amelia Smith, is a professional in the health, nutrition and diet industry.

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