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A Day In The Life Of A Teenager With Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 Diabetes Finally Explained

Type 1 Diabetes Finally Explained

Let me say this with no exaggeration. My whole life, all day, all night, every day and each night is about keeping my blood sugar between the red and yellow lines. Whether I’m wearing, or not wearing, my continuous glucose monitor (CGM), screen pictured below. (The little white dots between the red and yellow lines are my blood sugar levels every five minutes. The 99 mg/dl (5.4 mmol/l) was my blood sugar level the moment I took this photo. The larger white dots are glare from the camera.) I just explained this “staying between the lines” to my mother, now being able to visibly show her on my monitor what I’ve long tried to tell her: Type 1 diabetes is a tightrope walk — all day and all night taking action to anticipate, prevent and recover from my blood sugar going too high and too low. My life is, and will forever be, staying between the lines. I got diabetes in February 1972 when I was 18 years old. I’m now 60. I’ve had diabetes more than four decades, more than two-thirds of my life. I have no memory of what life was like before “staying between the lines.” Type 1 diabetes is the other diabetes. The one you don’t hear about on TV commercials — that’s Type 2 diabetes. People with Type 2 diabetes produce insulin but not enough or their body doesn’t use it effectively. While people with Type 2 diabetes also must keep their blood sugar between the lines, it doesn’t require as intense effort. Even for those who take insulin, certain hormones they have that Type 1s lack, help to regulate their after meal blood sugars from rising too high and offset severe low blood sugar. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition. Your body destroys your pancreas’ insulin-producing (beta) cells. You no longer produce insulin, or at most a trace amount. It’s Continue reading >>

Teenager With Type 1 Diabetes -

Teenager With Type 1 Diabetes -

I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes just nine days before my thirteenth birthday. I was excited to start a new chapter of my life. I was about to start my last year of middle school and officially become a teenager. Becoming a teenager is rough. We all know it. At this point in your life, youre so desperate to slip under the radar and fit in as much as possible. And with something that resembles a pager on my waist, it became difficult to fit in. For my first year of diagnosis, I had to go to the nurses office everyday to give myself an injection after lunch. I remember clearly a classmate of mine being in the nurses office when I gave an injection one day. He later called me out in front of my entire class asking why did you give yourself an Epipen shot earlier? I didnt know how to respond. I was frozen. My teacher, who overheard the conversation, tried to change the subject and move on. That was the first of many times in that first year that I was humiliated for being different. Later in the year one of my friends, who didnt know I was diabetic, saw me check my blood sugar. She immediately asked me what my meter was. I froze again. I felt that same rush of humility. I ignored her. Later that day, she messaged me and I explained that I was a diabetic and I didnt want her to think I was a freak because I wasnt like everyone else. She responded with compassion and explained how she would have never thought that, even if I am different. I started to feel better about being different after that conversation. The first year of high school was also the first year I had an insulin pump. I noticed as I walked down the hall , people would eye my waist, where my insulin pump would sit everyday. I felt that same rush of humility, yet again. I became embarrassed by diabetes aga Continue reading >>

A Day In The Life Of A Type 1 Diabetes Patient

A Day In The Life Of A Type 1 Diabetes Patient

A day in the life of a Type 1 diabetes patient Written by Kristie Rivers, MD, FAAP, Board Certified Pediatrician In America, nearly 15,000 children are diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes each year. While this disease puts a tremendous physical and emotional strain on children and their families, it also causes a significant financial burden on both the patient and society as a whole. Diabetes is a disease that can be controlled with close blood glucose monitoring, but the equipment needed to achieve this control often comes at a high cost. Without certain medical supplies, a diabetic would be unable to check his or her blood glucose and unable to give himself or herselflife-saving insulin. Diabetics cannot survive without these supplies, which they must use multiple times per day. But diabetes supplies consist of more than just needles and syringes. To get a glimpse into the daily life of a diabetic, here is a list of supplies a diabetic must have at their immediate disposal every day in order to survive: Lancets/lancing device to stick their fingers in order to draw blood Alcohol swabs to clean the finger prior to sticking Test strips to put the drop of blood onto Glucometer, the device used to measure the blood glucose Control solution to calibrate the glucometer in order to ensure it gives an accurate reading Short acting insulin to give with meals or in the event the blood glucose is too high Long-acting insulin to act as the steady daily dose of insulin, delivering a slow, continuous amount Syringes or needles to deliver the insulin several times per day Glucose tablets/gel/kit to give in an emergency ifthe blood glucose drops too low Depending on the patients age, insurance coverage, and level of diabetes control, some patients will also have: An insulin pump which a Continue reading >>

A Day In The Life Of Type 1 Diabetes

A Day In The Life Of Type 1 Diabetes

Unless you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, it’s hard to imagine the daily vigilance that is required to manage the disease. In the first installment of a new New York Times video series, you can get a glimpse of a day with Type 1 through the experiences of teenager Dominique Corozzo. The 16-year-old has been adjusting to living with Type 1 diabetes and discusses the challenges of her diagnosis and how she copes every day with the disease. For more information about research trials involving Type 1 diabetes, go to the National Institutes of Health TrialNet website. For more information about the Naomi Berrie Diabetes Center, featured in the video, go to www.nbdiabetes.org. Continue reading >>

Mother Shares Her Child's Struggle With Type 1 Diabetes

Mother Shares Her Child's Struggle With Type 1 Diabetes

This was me in high shool, but it extended through college. My college experience was a bad one as a result. In retrospect, I ended up with a math degree from an ivy league school, and have no complcations, but I nonetheless feel like I threw away four years of my life feeling awful, physically and emotionally, and I have no way of getting them back.I don't have any advice though...I knew what to do, I kept trying to make fresh starts, I just couldn't make myself do it. How honest !- Thank you for opening the door to conversation between parents, between parents and children, and for raising awareness that we must stay aware of and involved in our adolescent's diabetes care. Moira, this is an amazing post. And not just for moms and dads of T1s! As a PWD, I can say that - at 31 years old, after 16 years with T1 - I struggle every single day to find that balance between self-care and freedom. It's the biggest problem I think diabetics face, and is why doctors all cluck their tongues about "compliance."When you never get a break from something like this, when you never get a day off or a moment to think about something else (because the D is always, always, always there), it is hard to maintain the energy and commitment required to take care of yourself. The diabetes wagon is horrifically slippery - I know I've spent all these years hopping on it and falling right back off. It's work. It's not fun. It can be draining. And I know I can have a lot of resentment about the fact that this is what I have to spend a lot of my time and emotional energy on.Thanks for your post - Lauren sounds like a smart, tough cookie, and that's half the battle. I'm the father of an 8 year old and I am not sitting here clucking my tongue. On the contrary I feel your pain and am fully aware I hav Continue reading >>

Diabetes Type 1

Diabetes Type 1

Most of the young people we talked to said that they had found it very difficult to control their diabetes when they were teenagers. They said that their control often went haywire during puberty because their hormones were 'all over the place' and also because they didn't want to have to think about diabetes all the time. Those who were diagnosed at a young age said that their diabetes was 'better controlled' before they reached adolescence. The young people we talked to said controlling diabetes can be difficult at first and it's never going to be a 100 per cent perfect, but having a positive attitude helps. They wanted others to know that diabetes doesn't have to determine who you are and what you can achieve. The only difference between a diabetic and a non-diabetic teenager is that diabetics need to do more planning. Before they got their diabetes under good control, plenty of young people told us they had gone through times when they rebelled against their condition. They didn't want to think about diabetes and they didn't want diabetes to control them and stop them doing normal things with their friends. Rebelling could include eating too much or too little, not doing blood glucose tests and eating the wrong kinds of food. Eventually they found out from experience that doing these things made them feel terrible. Getting to grips with all the different parts of their diabetes control could take some people longer than others. The effect on families and parents Many young people talked to us about times when they'd rebelled against their parents and families as well as their diabetes. Looking back they realised they had made life difficult for everybody, including themselves. Some said that they got frustrated and angry when they couldn't control their diabetes wel Continue reading >>

A Day-to-day Guide For Managing Type 1 Diabetes

A Day-to-day Guide For Managing Type 1 Diabetes

Intro It’s normal to feel overwhelmed about managing type 1 diabetes, especially when life gets busy. After all, dealing with diabetes isn’t always convenient. While each day is different, adding some simple strategies into your daily routine can help you to stay on track and live well with type 1 diabetes. Morning Rise, shine, and check your blood sugar Check your blood sugar as soon as possible after you wake up. This will give you an idea of what your blood sugar was like overnight. You can correct it right away with food or insulin if you find that it’s too high or too low. You may also consider recording your blood sugar levels and other important information in a diabetes journal. This can help you can keep of track of how well your diabetes is controlled from day to day. Start your day with a healthy breakfast Eating well is an important part of managing type 1 diabetes. Start your day off right with a nutritious breakfast that follows your healthy eating plan. A healthy plan for type 1 diabetes typically includes foods from each food group, such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and healthy fats. Since you’re taking insulin, you should also include a moderate amount of healthy carbohydrates at each meal. This will prevent your blood sugar from dropping too low. Make sure to keep track of your carbs and match your intake with your insulin dosage, if needed. You can record this information in your diabetes journal. Some quick and easy breakfast ideas for people with type 1 diabetes include scrambled eggs, oatmeal with low-fat milk, or a fruit and yogurt parfait. Don’t forget to test your blood sugar before and after each meal, including breakfast. Take your medications Remember to take your insulin and any other medications. For busy Continue reading >>

A Look Inside The Mind Of Your T1d Teen (by Someone Who Recently Was One)

A Look Inside The Mind Of Your T1d Teen (by Someone Who Recently Was One)

Brought to you by Lilly Diabetes | Disney A Look Inside the Mind of Your T1D Teen (by Someone Who Recently Was One) Libby Russell, guest blogger, IHavetheSugars.com Being a teenager is not an easy job. But being the parent of a teenager? Thats a whole different pay grade. I have a lot of memories from my teenage years, but thankfully, as I creep up on my late 20s, a lot of the tougher, more embarrassing memories have begun to fade. I am now proud to say that not every move, door slam, and sassy comeback is fueled by my hormones. And Im even prouder to say that I no longer feel the need to decorate every single one of my binders and textbooks with male catalog models. Seventeen, specifically, is a significant age for teenagers. There are a lot of firsts. We get our drivers licenses, see rated-R movies, visit and apply to colleges, and if our parties get busted for noise complaints, the police are legally allowed to ask us questions Really, officer, we were just playing board games! Most will agree that at 17, on top of all the excitement, theres an inherent vulnerability that sometimes follows us around like the rain cloud over Eeyores head. A cloud that for me, personally, is something I will never be able to forget. Why? Because despite all of the amazing firsts I experienced at 17, I was also told, Oh, by the way, your body, mind, and spirit will never be the same again, because you have type 1 diabetes. (Read more about that day here .) Im very aware of the unique set of challenges that parents of a teenager with type 1 especially a newly diagnosed one face on a daily basis. Looking back at my experiences over the past 11 years, there are three key memories that I want to share to help provide some perspective about what your teenager might be going through. As a di Continue reading >>

Type 1 Diabetes In Children And Teens

Type 1 Diabetes In Children And Teens

Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is a disease that is marked by the bodys inability to manufacture insulin. Without insulin, the body cannot process the glucose from the food we eat. The result is that glucose levels rise dangerously high which can lead to a variety of serious health problems. There is currently no cure for run-of-the-mill diabetes with no complications, but the disease can be managed with daily doses of insulin. Type 1 diabetes is scary for parents of newly diagnosed children and their parents. The disease is unfortunately, all too common. Each year, some 13,000 children are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in the United States, alone. Theres no magic wand to wave type 1 diabetes away, but the disease can be controlled and managed, with careful attention. Diabetes affects the way the body uses glucose, which is a type of sugar in the blood. Glucose is a byproduct of the food we eat. Most people use this glucose as the main source of energy to fuel the various functions of the body. After eating a meal, the body breaks down food into nutrients, such as glucose. These nutrients are released into your bloodstream by way of the gastrointestinal tract. This causes the level of glucose in the blood to rise after a meal. In healthy people, this rise in the level of glucose, or blood sugar, tells the pancreas to make a hormone called insulin, and to release this hormone into the bloodstream. In people with type 1 diabetes, however, the body stops making insulin. This makes it impossible for the body to get energy from glucose-producing foods, without help. Since the body cant use glucose without insulin, glucose remains in the bloodstream, with blood levels of glucose rising higher each time food is eaten. An easy way to understand the role of insulin is to think of it as Continue reading >>

Watch: A Day In The Life Of A Type 1 Diabetic

Watch: A Day In The Life Of A Type 1 Diabetic

Watch: A Day in the Life of a Type 1 Diabetic Each day, a person with Type 1 diabetes needs to do different things to stay a live, whether it be poke their finger to test their glucose levels multiple times, take shots, or program their insulin pumps to deliver insulin. They also have to do lots of math to add up the carbohydrate counts in their food for each meal and snack. Here, the Dale family shares one day in the life of their daughter Aspen, as she goes through her routine of testing anddosing thorough the day, as well as how she goes through changing out both her insulin pump and Dexcom CGM. As an adult, this can be overwhelming at times even for me, but I can remember being a kid just like Aspen, going through many of these same steps with my parents. Though, now, there are a lot more advancements since I was a kid. Heck, my pump didnt even have a bolus calculator in it! Im amazed by all of the technology these kids have now, and Im grateful they do! Sarah has lived with type 1 diabetes since 1988, diagnosed just after turning 4 years old. A technology nut at heart, she loves to explore the differences and uniqueness of different devices we use to manage our diabetes. She has had hands-on experiences with many different insulin pumps, including Medtronic Revel and 530G, Animas Ping and Vibe, Omnipod 100,200, and 400, Accu-Chek Spirit, and Tandem t:slim, as well as many, many glucose meters! She has been a blogger at Sugabetic.Me since 2009, with topics ranging from her own personal diabetes stories, pregnancy and diabetes, diabetes technology, and even hypothyroidism. She also serves as an Advisory Board Member to Diabetes Community Advocacy Foundation. Shes also a wife, and a mom to two little kiddos. Hey, thanks for the video, was very interesting & I hope th Continue reading >>

Pricks And Needles: What Living With Type 1 Diabetes Is Like

Pricks And Needles: What Living With Type 1 Diabetes Is Like

Type 1 diabetes, a rarer form of the chronic disease, affects three million Americans. Here's one of them. Back in early 2001, I was a happy, but slightly overweight, 13-year-old boy. Just before the summer I decided to start eating less junk food in hopes of shedding a couple of pounds from my 135-pound frame. I got results quickly -- and my weight kept dropping. Looking back, the signs that something was amiss were obvious. I couldn't make it through 50-minute class periods in middle school without having to run off and pee. It felt like my thirst could never be satiated. I was always tired. But the weight loss was the most obvious sign. Weight kept coming off. 125 pounds, 120, 115. My parents called my pediatrician, but diabetes never came up as a potential cause. An unusual teenage growth spurt prior to puberty was a possibility. An eating disorder was also suggested. By the time I arrived for my annual physical on Nov. 6, 2001, none of my clothes fit and I weighed just 98 pounds -- nearly 30 percent less than my peak weight. More phone calls and doctors' appointments revealed nothing. Back at home after the appointment, I hopped in the shower but was almost immediately interrupted by my mom. The doctor's office called with results from my blood test and I had to get to the emergency room. When I checked into the hospital, my blood sugar was 971. The normal range is 80-150. The doctors said I would have fallen into a diabetic coma within another week. Back then, diabetes seemed like a death sentence. My whole life routine would have to change. I would have to check my blood glucose at least five times a day and stick myself with needles at least four times a day. But for the past ten years, I've been living with an illness that could shorten my life expectancy by 15 Continue reading >>

'the Highs And The Lows' For A Teen With Type 1 Diabetes - Jdrf

'the Highs And The Lows' For A Teen With Type 1 Diabetes - Jdrf

The Highs and the Lows for a teen with type 1 diabetes The Highs and the Lows for a teen with type 1 diabetes Author: Lydia Parkhurst's story | Posted: 19 August 2015 Lydia Parkhurst, 18, had autopilot assumptions about type 1 diabetes before she was diagnosed. Her journey so far of life with the condition has involved plenty of highs and lows! She shared them with JDRF. Autopilot Diabetes thats what you get when you eat too much sugar, right? But at four stone, weight was definitely not my problem and at 12 years old I was oblivious to what type 1 diabetes was. The same day I was injecting myself and checking my sugar levels. Taking type 1 in my stride and 6 months after with a HBA1C of 6.2% I was offered an insulin pump with undying support from my parents and sister! High I signed up to be a youth Ambassador for JDRF. Thats where my passion accelerated! I attended my first Youth Ambassador Day where I met my friend, Maya, unexpectedly meeting again five years later as a roommate on a diabetes camp! Ive had many fantastic opportunities such as holding fundraisers, doing speeches to over 500 people and meeting new friends which is so important- being a teen with type 1 can feel isolating at times! Low GCSEs are the bane of every teenagers life! Even more so with type 1- stress and diabetes do not mix well! A spoonful of sugar does not help our medicine go down! During GCSEs I was put in a separate room due to the anxiety I was experiencing and problems with my diabetes. This meant months of fluctuating blood sugar levels. Sometimes my bloods would be high because of adrenaline, other times my blood sugars would go low with no extra insulin added. UNPREDICTABLE is an understatement. High Last year I was lucky enough to upgrade to an omnipod insulin pump which I love an Continue reading >>

Diabetes: A Lost Childhood

Diabetes: A Lost Childhood

On the day five years ago when my daughter Izzi, then aged 10, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, her seven-year-old brother Rowan was reluctant to visit her in the hospital. "Is she going to die?" he asked gravely. It was hard to reassure him through my tears, as I had only the vaguest idea of what type 1 diabetes was. I now know that, without insulin, which she will need to inject multiple times every day for the rest of her life, the answer would almost certainly have been yes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition in which insulin-producing cells in the pancreas just give up. No one knows why, and there is no cure. Izzi did nothing to cause this to happen and we have no family history of the condition, so, for us, there is no genetic link. She was just unlucky, like the 400,000 other people in the UK who have it. The condition is a life sentence: every organ in her body is under constant attack and the only defence is to pump herself full of insulin. We only realised something was wrong when Izzi started to drink large quantities of water. At first I was pleased: I had always thought she didn't drink enough. But when one day she forgot to take her water bottle to school and went into a massive panic, I began to suspect there was a problem. We later learned that the need to drink lots was a result of her body's attempt to flush out the excess sugar in her blood. Insulin is the hormone that acts as a key to unlock pathways between the blood and the body's cells, which need the sugar for energy. Without insulin, the concentration of sugar in the blood can build up to life-threatening levels. We were fortunate as our GP rushed Izzi straight to hospital. A quarter of the 2,000 children diagnosed annually with type 1 diabetes become seriously ill, and 10 die each ye Continue reading >>

10 Tips For Teenagers To Live Well With Type 1 Diabetes

10 Tips For Teenagers To Live Well With Type 1 Diabetes

Twitter Summary: @asbrown1 shares his top 10 tips for living w/ #T1D, straight from presentation to 100+ teens at #CWDFFL15 At the Children with Diabetes Friends For Life Conference this month, I had the incredible opportunity to speak to ~100 teenagers with diabetes. My talk, “10 Tips for Living Well with Type 1,” was a lot of fun to put together, and our team thought diaTribe readers might be interested in seeing it. I agonized over how to present this so that it wouldn’t come across as a lecture – even my teenage self would not react well to some of the advice (“Sleep seven hours a night? Hah! I have sports plus exams plus the next level to beat in Halo 3!”). I concluded that the best thing I could do was make this session a conversation, but ground it in lessons I’ve learned over time. Thankfully, I also had the amazing FFL staff by my side to help guide the discussion. The session reminded me of something that I intuitively know but often forget: each person’s diabetes is completely different, and what works for me won’t work for everyone. And equally important, what works for me may change over time – it certainly has since I was a teenager. I’m sharing the slides below in case they’re useful, but my biggest hope is that it gets you thinking about your own diabetes. What motivates you? What drags you down? What can you do better today? Who can you reach out to for support? Let us what you think by email or on Twitter. As the oldest of six kids, I had a lot of responsibility from a young age, and my Mom was also a very hands-off parent; both helped me take the reins of my diabetes from an early age. I hope everyone can find the right balance between taking care of their own diabetes, but also relying on their parents for support when needed. Continue reading >>

How Our Daughter’s Type 1 Diabetes Diagnosis Changed Her Life—and Ours

How Our Daughter’s Type 1 Diabetes Diagnosis Changed Her Life—and Ours

I suspect that every parent has something they’re particularly worried about, something they work especially hard to protect their children from. For my husband, who spent his summers during high school and college restoring old houses, that something was lead paint. For me, that something was melanoma, after my father died of the disease. You control what you can control—you make your kids take off their shoes when they enter the house, to keep the lead dust outside; you slather them with sunscreen to protect them from the midday sun. But then something comes along, a bolt from the blue, that makes you realize you have no control at all. This happened to us at the end of August, 2012, when our six-year-old daughter, Bisi, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. I first felt the chill of unease that something was wrong at a summer picnic with friends. Twice Bisi had to race behind a tree to pee, with an urgency that reminded me of when she was first wearing underwear rather than diapers. But she was at summer camp, and swimming two or three times a day. Probably, we told ourselves, she was just drinking too much chlorinated pool water. We left at the end of the week for our annual vacation on Block Island. So often as a parent, your mind jumps to the worst possibility, and it turns out you’re just being silly. But there’s the other side of the coin, too, when the symptoms are right in front of you, and you work to believe that nothing’s wrong. Over the weekend, we started to worry more and more. Bisi’s energy level—never very high—was even lower than usual, and it was clear she’d lost weight (something we’d noticed but again blamed on summer camp). We started obsessively searching her symptoms on the Internet after Bisi and her older brother went to bed, Continue reading >>

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