Categories: DiabetesPaediatrics

Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus in Children – Quick Facts

Type 1 diabetes, once called “juvenile diabetes”, has shockingly increased among children over the past twenty years. Worldwide, more children are becoming diabetic patients with numbers increasing at 3% to 5% every year – or approximately 15 new cases per 100,000 children. But statistics do not tell the full story.

Type 1 diabetes victims have their pancreas failing to produce sufficient insulin. The hormone insulin enables sugar (glucose) entering cells to produce the energy needed for the body to function.

Symptoms of Type 1 diabetes are evident: frequent urination, excess thirst, a feeling of fatigue, weight loss. But lack of awareness creates ignorance of diabetic realities, with the result that myths and misconceptions spread. Wrong information, delayed in seeking medical help for children adds to worsen the diabetic condition. It can lead to death.

Two common myths: insulin injections are habit-forming; oral medication cures type 1 diabetes. Both are untrue. The treatment of type 1 diabetes needs insulin treatment appropriate to the needs of the individual patient – with an endocrinologist (doctor specializing in the treatment of endocrine and hormonal disorders) deciding on the best course of treatment.

Caring for diabetic children involves team effort with the expertise of paediatric endocrinologists, paediatric nutritionists, diabetes educators, counsellors and support groups.

Advances in insulin therapy also bring good news for children suffering from Type 1 diabetes. This ensures better insulin treatment with minimal inconvenience to the child. New forms of treatment reduce diabetes-related complications as well as increased life expectancy.

One such new diabetes-fighting technology is the insulin pump. Insulin pumps have improved the quality of life of children with Type 1 diabetes. These pumps largely spare the diabetic child from the painful routine of needle pricks. They help the child lead a more normal life, enjoy the usual games of childhood and physical exercise and even enjoy the treat of occasional snacks – with the safeguard of convenient insulin doses.

Similar developments in diabetic research offer the happy promise of more effective and convenient treatment to children with Type 1 diabetes. The silver lining of better treatment lights up the darkest clouds of deadly diseases affecting the lives of children and adults.

Dr. Abhishek Kulkarni, Consultant Paediatric Endocrinology, SRCC Children’s Hospital, Mumbai.

Narayana Health

Recent Posts

Heart failure in today’s world!

Heart failure is a commonly rising medical problem these days, especially in the elderly population.…

3 days ago

Cardiovascular Disease in Children

What are the Cardiovascular diseases seen in children? The majority of children who suffer from…

3 days ago

Common issues in Newborns

Here are some of the common issues faced by parents in Newborns: Skin Telangietatic nevi…

3 days ago

Are spinal surgeries safe?

According to an article published in Times of India, India sees more than 200,000 cases…

3 days ago

Coronavirus and Cardiovascular disease

Coronavirus and Cardiovascular disease – Consternation and Concern for Heart Patients Ever since Coronavirus disease…

4 days ago

Cancer Patients and New Corona virus

This virus is named SARS-CoV-2 and the disease caused by this virus is referred to…

5 days ago