If your child has recently been diagnosed with diabetes, you may be worried about how it will affect his or her life. Diabetic children can live a normal life and do almost everything that other kids can do. They only need to be careful about how they plan their daily activities. Typically, type 1 diabetes is found in children. This is usually caused by a lack of insulin production. However, today clinicians are diagnosing more and more children with type 2 diabetes. This is usually a product of insulin resistance. Children with type 2 diabetes may have a very different care plan than children with type 1 diabetes. That is one reason it is very important to work closely with your child’s clinician when developing a diabetes care plan.
Children and type 2 diabetes
Fifteen years ago, type 2 diabetes was almost unheard of among children. Since then, the number of cases has increased greatly. Scientists are now trying to figure out how best to treat this kind of condition among children. According to a 2007 study published in the journal of the American Medical Association, there are over 3700 new cases of type 2 diabetes among young people in the United States. According to the evidence, it appears that type 2 diabetes behaves differently in children when compared to adults.
Why more children are getting type 2 diabetes
Once considered an adult disease, type 2 diabetes now affects an increasing number of children. In type 2 diabetes, the pancreas suddenly fails to produce enough insulin to control a person’s blood sugar or the insulin isn’t as effective as it once was(also known as insulin resistance). Those who are suffering from this condition may suffer from serious complications such as stroke, heart disease, loss of vision and even premature death.
One common culprit for this rise in childhood diabetes is obesity. When a child is obese this significantly increases their chances of developing type 2 diabetes. However, this is not the only factor since many children are overweight and yet don’t have type 2 diabetes. Obesity is suspected to be rising among all children, so there are cases of obesity in both type 1 and type 2 diabetic children. Medical tests may be required in order to make the distinction.
Because children who are obese are more likely to become diabetic, experts are now focusing on how much or how little these children should eat.
Prevention and treatment
Because type 2 diabetes in children is a very recent phenomenon, doctors may lack standardized treatments. One known factor in preventing type 2 diabetes in children is avoiding obesity. After consulting with your clinician, it may be ideal to give your diabetic child a balanced diet including whole grain foods, fiber, fruits, and vegetables. It may also be wise to avoid sodas and other sugary foods. You should also consider encouraging your young ones to play and exercise. By encouraging your kids to exercise and eat healthily at a young age, you may not only be able to prevent this disease but also set your kids on the path to long and healthy life. The good thing is that researchers are still learning more about these conditions.
Have you been recently diagnosed? Talk to your doctor about your meal plan and always consult your doctor when making healthcare decisions.
*The author of this blog is not a medical professional and this article does not contain professional medical advice. This blog is not intended to substitute for medical advice, treatment, or diagnosis. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of the contents of this article. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call 911 immediately.