Categorized | Health, Toddler Sickness

All You Need To Know About Diabetes In Children

Diabetes is one of the most common chronic conditions that affect children. It is a condition that causes harmful levels of sugar to accumulate in the blood. Type 1 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes in children while type 2 diabetes usually affects older people. But according to recent studies, more and more children are diagnosed with it. Use this guide to help you educate yourself about diabetes in children.

Causes

Type 1 diabetes can be caused by an autoimmune disorder that causes the body to attack the healthy cells in the pancreas that create insulin (a hormone that regulates the level of glucose in the bloodstream). The cause of this attack is unknown, but according to child health experts, genetics and viruses can trigger the condition.

On the other hand, type 2 diabetes in children can be a result of the body’s inability to react to the insulin that is being produced. It can also be inherited or a result of being obese and physically inactive. Type 2 diabetes is more common in children of African American, Hispanic, Asian American and Native American descent.

Signs and Symptoms

You know your toddler has diabetes if he has one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Abrupt weight loss
  • Extreme thirst or dehydration
  • Increased appetite
  • Frequent urination
  • Fatigue
  • Crankiness
  • Yeast infection
  • Stomach pains
  • Vomiting
  • Kussmaul breathing (quick and heavy breathing)
  • Ketoacidosis (breath smells like acetone)

Once you notice any of these symptoms, consult with your pediatrician immediately. Diabetes is a lethal disease that can affect every major organ in your toddler’s body which can lead to heart, blood vessel, eye, kidney and nerve damage.

Treatment

Blood and Sugar Monitoring

You have to ensure your toddler’s glucose level stays in a healthy range by checking it three times a day with a blood glucose meter.

Medications

You will have to give your toddler daily shots of insulin, depending on your toddler’s age and needs. Insulin shots are available in different types – fast-acting insulin (starts working 5 to 15 minutes after injection, usually given during the day), slow-acting insulin (works 30 to 60 minutes after injection, normally given at night), long-acting insulin (provides coverage for as long as 20 to 26 hours) and intermediate-acting insulin (works 1 to 3 hours after it is taken).

Healthy Diet

Children with diabetes are advised to eat nutritious foods and limit the intake of carbohydrates, fats and sweets. You can consult with a nutritionist to determine the correct diet plan for your little one.

Physical Activity

A diabetic toddler will greatly benefit from exercising. Encourage your toddler to take a sport, play physically demanding games, walk around your neighbourhood or ride a bicycle together. Any activity that will get your toddler moving will be good for him.

Diabetes is one health condition that should be taken seriously. Talk to your child’s doctor and make a research so you can learn as much information as you can about diabetes.

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