Is this topic for you?
This topic is about
type 1 diabetes in children age 11 years and younger.
Before you read this topic, you may want to read
Type 1 Diabetes: Recently Diagnosed.
If this topic does not
answer your questions, one of the following topics may meet your needs.
- Type 1 Diabetes, if you want to learn about type 1
diabetes but do not have the disease
- Type 1 Diabetes: Recently Diagnosed, if you have been
told recently that you or your child has type 1 diabetes
- Type 1 Diabetes: Living With the Disease, if you or
your teen has type 1 diabetes. If you have not read the topic Type 1 Diabetes:
Recently Diagnosed, you may want to read it first.
- Type 1 Diabetes: Living With Complications, if you
have complications, such as problems with your eyes, kidneys, heart, blood
vessels, or nerves, caused by diabetes
What is type 1 diabetes?
Type 1 diabetes is a
lifelong disease that develops when the
pancreas stops making
insulin. Your body needs insulin to let sugar
(glucose) move from the blood into the body's cells, where it can be used for
energy or stored for later use.
Without insulin, the sugar cannot
get into the cells to do its work. It stays in the blood instead. This can
cause high blood sugar levels. A person has diabetes when the blood sugar is
What will it be like for your child to live with type 1 diabetes?
Your child can live a long, healthy life by learning
to manage his or her diabetes. It will become a big part of your and your
You play a major role in helping your child take
charge of his or her diabetes care. Let your child do as much of the care as
possible. At the same time, give your child the support and guidance he or she
The key to managing
diabetes is to keep blood sugar levels in a target range. To do
this, your child needs to take insulin, eat about the same amount of
carbohydrate at each meal, and exercise. Part of your
child’s daily routine also includes checking his or her blood sugar levels at
certain times, as advised by your doctor.
The longer a person has
diabetes, the more likely he or she is to have problems, such as diseases of
the eyes, heart, blood vessels, nerves, and kidneys. For some reason, children
seem protected from these problems during childhood. But if your child can
control his or her blood sugar levels every day, it may help prevent problems
What symptoms should you watch for?