A quick guide for parents on how to care for their child with type 1 diabetes

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Harsh Kedia – Scaling a Diabetic Chef | Forbes Asia 30 under 30 2022 | Forbes

Nothing can be more heartbreaking for a parent than knowing that their child has been diagnosed with a lifelong condition that requires intense management and that there is no cure in sight, at least for now.

This can be difficult to manage when your child is diagnosed with type 1 diabetes (T1D). Managing the disease at home will require parents to make several lifestyle changes, especially if they are young.

Dr Mudit SabharwalMedical Affairs Manager, BeatO App says that although type 1 and type 2 diabetes are both types of diabetes mellitus (DM) that cause high blood sugar, T1D is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes the pancreas to stop producing or produce less than insulin required.

What is insulin and why is it so important?

Insulin is a hormone that controls the amount of sugar/glucose in your blood and when the body doesn’t have enough insulin it can’t use food for energy. While T1D can develop in anyone at any age, the most common age of diagnosis is between 4 and 6 years old and throughout precocious puberty which is between 10 and 14 years old. . Having a close family member like a parent or sibling with T1D can increase a child’s chances of getting it.

This leads us to ask some important questions of Dr. Mudit Sabharwal.

What should a parent do if their child has type 1 diabetes?

Dr Mudit Sabharwal says, “Learn how to check and interpret your child’s blood sugar, start counting carbohydrates which may require dietary changes in your family, learn how to manage sick days and diabetes at school and how various foods, diseases, and exercises affect blood sugar. Learn about how insulin works and how to give injections or use an insulin pump. Plus, help your child learn to listen to their body for signs of high blood sugar. or hypoglycemia, as well as self-manage T1D when they become age-appropriate.”

A first-person account of patients with T1D:

“They gave up their sleep so much in the early years for me! My sugar levels would fluctuate dramatically during the night, and my parents, no matter where they were in the world, would wake me up urging me to check it,” said Jazz SethiFounder and Director of the Diabetes Foundation. Jazz was diagnosed with T1D when she was thirteen.

T1D or other forms of diabetes in children under 6 present additional challenges in terms of daily responsibilities and the need for ongoing supervision and care. Beyond the help provided by health care experts, children need additional support not only to take on practical responsibilities, but also to adapt to a new life situation and manage their emotions, especially during the first year after diagnosis.

Harsh Kedia dubbed the “Diabetic cook said, “I was diagnosed with diabetes when I was 15. The hardest part (for my parents) was first explaining the diagnosis to me. When I discovered it, I was a little carried away. Mom told me about her diagnosis and how she will be on medication for the rest of her life, and that everything was fine. It helped me solve my problems and overcome social stigma.

They may be overwhelmed by what is happening or begin to believe that they are different from their classmates. Therefore, putting their needs ahead of yours and supporting your child’s mental and emotional well-being becomes very crucial. It is also usual to be concerned about detecting the signs and symptoms of a diabetic condition and to seek appropriate medical assistance.

Finally, it is essential to educate friends, school administrators and other family members about T1D and how it can be helpful in helping your child through the recovery process. Parents also need to get help because while you can and will do a lot for your child, you will need all the support you can get.

“Caregivers of a person with a constant, chronic, ongoing and demanding illness do not have an easy task. It’s not easy to watch your child inject 10 times a day or inject regularly. It’s hard to watch your child go through ups and downs while being strong for them. Their unwavering support helped me grow as a person, not a patient, and it made diabetes a little more bearable,” added Jazz Sethi.

The essential :

Monitoring and tracking is essential to keep track of blood glucose levels and to ensure the correct dose of insulin is being delivered. Since parents are the first point of care, with their help, expert advice from doctors, and modification of lifestyle choices, T1D can be better managed.

Disclaimer: The tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purposes only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Always consult your doctor or dietitian before starting any fitness program or making any changes to your diet.

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