The majority of children with childhood diabetes get Type 1 diabetes rather than Type 2 diabetes, which is more common in adults. A person with Type 1 diabetes has a body that does not produce insulin. Insulin is a hormone that helps the body process and regulate sugar.
When a person's body doesn't produce insulin, it's because the body is attacking its own tissues and organs. When this occurs in a Type 1 diabetic, the body destroys the cells in the pancreas that are responsible for producing insulin.
Childhood diabetes isn't the most common ailment. However, the incidence of this in children has increased over the years. There are a variety of reasons for this, chief among them the fact that developed countries have also seen a rise in obesity rates. Obesity is one factor that contributes to diabetes.
Children that have this experience many of the same diabetic symptoms that adults with Type 2 diabetes experience. They experience weight loss, exhaustion, frequent urination and headaches. The child may also experience behavioral problems.
One difficult thing with this in kids is that the symptoms can be very mild. In fact, your child could have it for years without you knowing. It is usually found when the child gets a blood test as part of a routine checkup.
One interesting thing about childhood diabetes is that kids with Type 1 don't usually have a history of it in their family. This is unique because adults with Type 2 typically do have a history of the disease in their family.
If your child gets diagnosed with childhood diabetes, don't panic. Learn as much as you can about the disease. Pay close attention when your doctor explains your medical options. Your doctor will have your child take insulin, though there are different ways to administer insulin. Also, you're going to need to learn a lot about monitoring your child's diet. Kids with diabetes can't have too much sugar. They also need to eat several small meals that include a nice mix of carbohydrates, fats and proteins.
Childhood diabetes certainly isn't the end of the world. A child with this can live a long happy life, they just need to make a few modifications to their lifestyle to stay healthy.
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