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Until recently, the common type of diabetes in children and teens was type 1. It was called juvenile diabetes. With Type 1 diabetes, the pancreas does not make insulin. Insulin is a hormone that helps glucose,or sugar, get into your cells to give them energy. Without insulin, too much sugar stays in the blood.
But now younger people are also getting type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes used to be called adult-onset diabetes. But now it is becoming more common in children and teens, due to more obesity. With Type 2 diabetes, the body does not make or use insulin well.
Children have a higher risk of type 2 diabetes if they are obese, have a family history of diabetes, or are not active, and do not eat well. To lower the risk of type 2 diabetes in children
- Have them maintain a healthy weight
- Be sure they are physically active
- Have them eat smaller portions of healthy foods
- Limit time with the TV, computer, and video
Children and teens with type 1 diabetes may need to take insulin. Type 2 diabetes may be controlled with diet and exercise. If not, patients will need to take oral diabetes medicines or insulin. A blood test called the A1C can check on how you are managing your diabetes.
Diagnosis and Tests
- Diagnosis of Diabetes and Prediabetes (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases)
Prevention and Risk Factors
- 4 Steps to Manage Your Diabetes for Life (National Diabetes Education Program) Also in Spanish
- How to Help Your Children Stay Healthy: Tips to Lower Their Chances of Getting Type 2 Diabetes (National Diabetes Education Program)
- Acanthosis Nigricans (Nemours Foundation) Also in Spanish
- Long-Term Complications of Diabetes (For Parents) (Nemours Foundation)
- Monogenic Forms of Diabetes: Neonatal Diabetes Mellitus and Maturity-Onset Diabetes of the Young (National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases)
- When Your Child Is Diagnosed with Diabetes: Parents' Questions for the Health Care Team (National Diabetes Education Program)
- ClinicalTrials.gov: Diabetes Mellitus (National Institutes of Health)
Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)
- Article: High Sclerostin and Dickkopf-1 (DKK-1) Serum Levels in Children and...
- Article: Thyroid and Islet Autoantibodies Predict Autoimmune Thyroid Disease at Type...
- Article: Oral magnesium supplementation improves glycemic control and lipid profile in...
- Diabetes in Children and Teens -- see more articles
- Diabetes: Glossary of Terms (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)