There are mainly three types of diabetes found in children. Type1 diabetes is the most common among them. Type1 diabetes was also termed as juvenile diabetes as it was mostly found in children. This article will highlight certain aspects related to child diabetes type1 and will also help us understand the life of a child with type1 diabetes.
Child with type1 diabetes has a defective immune system. The body of the child fails to accept the beta cells found in the pancreas. These cells are destroyed by the child’s own immune system. Beta cells are responsible for producing insulin. Insulin is a hormone that is required to convert the glucose in the food that we eat into energy. Lack of insulin leaves the glucose unutilized. This, in turn, raises the sugar levels in the body. Child diabetes type1 is a challenge for parents, teachers of the child, and the child himself/herself. As the child is young and immature, handling this disease in children is comparatively difficult than it is in adults.
Responsibility of a child with type1 diabetes
The responsibility of managing child diabetes type1 depends upon the age of the child. Infants and children up to the age of 8 years are more often dependant on their parents for all the support. Be it insulin shots or planning the meal, all is to be done by the parents and doctors. Children who have crossed the age of 8 or 9 may be more self dependent. They can be educated about the symptoms of diabetes and dietary regulations. They may also be taught about how to measure their glucose level and insulin dosage. However, the parents should keep a watch on all their actions. Adolescents are old enough to take the total responsibility of diabetes management on their own.
Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) and child diabetes type1
A child with type1 diabetes has strong chances of suffering from ill effects of diabetic ketoacidosis. This is identified as a major cause of a higher rate of mortality rate in children with type1 diabetes. DKA is a serious medical condition wherein the diabetes reaches an uncontrollable level. Immediate treatment with strong insulin dosages and other intravenous fluids may help to normalize the situation of the patient. This disease is found more in whites in USA as they suffer more from Type1 diabetes. The reasons are unknown, but DKA is more common in girls than in boys. The common symptoms of DKA are dehydration, acidosis, and urinary tract infections.
Treatment of child diabetes type1
The treatment of a child with type1 diabetes requires collective effort from the parents and the team of doctors. The pharmacists and dieticians have to work in coordination to make sure that the child gets all the required nutrition keeping the glucose levels in control. The insulin dosages should be given on time. The diet should include less of starch and fats. Fresh fruits and vegetables should be given to the child.
Child diabetes type1 does not have a permanent cure. However, it can be controlled and the child can live a happy life.