HELP with a newly diagnosed 16yo girl

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Skipm84 Posted: Mon, Dec 20 2010 6:31 PM

My daughter was just diagnosed with Type 1 and she is not dealing well with it.  She hates to *** her fingers to check her glucose levels and she not too crazy about the shots.  Is there any easy way to check your glucose level?  I think that would go a long way.  Also are there any teen support groups north of Boston?  I think she would be a good candidate for the pump, but apparently we have to get profecient with injections first.  She is not quite ready to inject herself yet (its been less than a week).  Are there any techniques to encourage her to try the injections herself?  Any help would be appreciated.

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Xtine74 replied on Tue, Dec 21 2010 2:14 PM

Hi,

My 16 yr old daughter was also recently diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.  She handled it very well when first diagnosed in March, but at that time she had no symptoms.  She was in the "honeymoon phase" until last month.  Now her body has changed and requires much more insulin.  She started showing signs of frequent urination, great thirst, not sleeping, tired all the time & huge appetite.

She is great at giving herself injections.  Childrens' Hospital in Boston was great in teaching both of us about diabetes.  However, now things have changed and she is not handling the symptoms very well.  Her blood sugar is in the process of being in control, trying every day to get the level down.  But now her vision has been affected by the diabetes and I'm not sure how to help her.  She is extremely independent, good student, has a job and good friends. 

But, she doesn't want anyone to know about her diabetes and doesn't want to discuss the details.  I feel helpless that I cannot fix her vision symptoms at this point.  We do the injections together, take the sugar level together and draw the insulin together.  We also cook together and the whole house is now a diabetic nutrition home.  I am also interested in a teen support group for my daughter south of Boston, but if not I am willing to travel to Boston.

Teenagers are the hardest group when dealing with diabetes.

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Because of your daughter's age I suggest that she look at another diabetes site. There is a special site created primarily for parents of diabetic children.There is also a teen forum there too. Here is the link:

http://www.childrenwithdiabetes.com

 I have been type 1 for 65 years and I am very healthy. Once your daughter has adjusted and takes good care of herself, she has a very good chance of living a long. healthy life.

Good luck to both of you!

Richard

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tomjef replied on Tue, Dec 21 2010 11:16 PM

Another good web site is Juvenation, http://juvenation.org

It's run by JDRF, and is intended for all Type 1's and their parents. Most participants are young adults, but they let me in! I'm T1, age 78, and was dx when I was 10. I have used a pump for over 15 years, and in my opinion it's definitely the better form of treatment. But, it's important that your daughter become proficient with injections (that's the only backup there is for a pump), and it's important that she accept the facts of Type 1 diabetes and knows how to deal with them before starting on a pump. Once she has given herself a couple of shots, she will realize that it's not as big a deal as she thought.

Tom Beatson

 

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Debbie replied on Wed, Dec 22 2010 11:03 AM

I am glad that you have reached out for help and I am glad that others have replied to you as well.  It can be a big adjustment both physically and emotionally when you are diagnosed with diabetes.  I think one of the most important things that you can do for your daughter is to find a health care team that you are both comfortable with and who you both can be honest with about what has been hard for your daughter.  Maybe your daughter's health care team could review her technique for checking blood sugars or offer a different lancet device?  I don’t know where you are getting your care but we have a great multidisciplinary team at the Joslin which includes doctors, nurse educators, dietitians and mental health counselors.  I wonder if you and your daughter could benefit from meeting with a mental health counselor that is knowledgeable about diabetes to talk about some of the issues that you described.  I am the social worker in pediatrics and we also have a psychologist as well. Our job is to talk to families about diabetes specific stressors like the stressors that you described.  Also I know you asked for suggestions to encourage your daughter to give injections herself but we find that teens usually benefit from parental support with diabetes tasks so you may want to continue to help her with injections when you two are together.  Finally I know you and another parent asked about diabetes support groups for teens.  There are not a lot of diabetes teen groups in the area.  The ADA has been organizing some teen programs and JDRF organizes local groups but they are mostly for parents. So I would encourage you to contact your local ADA and JDRF organizations for information about local groups and programs.  Good luck!

-Debbie Butler, LICSW, CDE

 

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bsosa replied on Wed, Feb 2 2011 10:16 AM

My 11 year old son was diagnosed with type 1 just under 2 weeks ago.  I am finding it more and more discouraging that there are no local support groups for children.  We have a Joslin center in Nashua, NH, but the only program I can find is for adults.  Children are so affected by this diagnosis and would benefit greatly if they could meet with other children on a regular basis so they don't feel so alone.  By all the posts I have read concerning newly diagnosed children, why hasn't Joslin initiated more programs focused on kids at their locations?  Any help or additional information would be greatly appreciated.

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Debbie replied on Fri, Feb 4 2011 1:50 PM

Sorry for the delay in my response.  At Joslin in Boston we have held groups for parents and children in the past but when families stopped coming we decided to team up with JDRF and lead groups in the community.  I would suggest you contact your local JDRF and ADA chapter and ask about groups and family programs in your area.  If you live in the Boston area you can contact Anna Floreen of the ADA at afloreen@diabetes.org or Lauren Shields of JDRF at lshields@jdrf.org .  Finally there are some great programs for kids and families at diabetes camps.  You may want to contact the Barton Center for more information http://bartoncenter.org/bcsite/front_page

Good luck!

 

-Debbie Butler, LICSW, CDE

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