Help. difficult child most likely has type one diabetes.

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by tryinghard, Mar 10, 2008.

  1. tryinghard

    tryinghard New Member

    My 12 year old son (diagnosis ADHD takes 30mg Metadate daily) has all the symptoms of type one diabetes. The symptoms started two weeks ago. I am waiting for the doctors office to open so I can take him in for testing. Does anyone else out there have any experience with type one diabetes?
  2. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Hi! That's me! I was diagnosed in my 20's and mine is attributed to many, many, many strep infections. (Who knows?).

    Most important: DON'T PANIC!!! Take a look at ALL the medications that he is/was taking. They could have an impact on this.

    Talk to your doctor. Make sure that you understand the information that you're being given. Ask for a referral to a really good nutritionist. His blood sugar can be affected by pretty much anything going into his system: sometimes positively, sometimes negatively.

    Diabetes is no longer the "death sentance" that it used to be. I've had it for over 15 years, had 3 kids (in 3 years) and still have a lot of fun.

    One big hint: Don't buy any medical supplies (meter's, blood test supplies, needles, etc.) without a prescription. Almost all insurance policies pay for these with a copay. It's WAY less expensive.

    Please don't panic...if you need help, pm me and I'll be glad to help!

  3. tryinghard

    tryinghard New Member


    Thank you. Yes, both husband and myself are in major panic mode. For a bunch of reasons. First, when you read all the complications that can occur I am just sick to my stomach. Second, my difficult child is a picky eater who doesn't like to eat on a regular basis. Third, my difficult child can't remember to do the basic things and now he will have to remember to test himself and give insulin four times a day.

    Like my husband said last night, "this just isn't right. the poor kid has dealt with so much (ADHD, learning disabilities) to have to deal with this too". I was devastated last night when I went to bed. This morning I am a little better. I keep telling myself it could be worse.

    Thanks for your offer to give me advice. How do I pm you?
  4. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Hi! Up top it says "User CP". You click on that and on the left side there's a button for "send messages". Just enter my screen name "nvts" in the who you want to write to and type away.

    Honestly, don't get to keyed up about it. It's basically a way of life vs. a horrible diagnosis! The complications are a result of not taking care of things, they are not an absolute!

    Breathe, breathe, breathe... ;)

  5. Take a deep breath, it will all be ok. Just be sure to educate yourself. I would recommend getting a referral to a pediatric endocrinologist, and you will want to see about a diabetes educator. I am not familiar with type 1, but I was diagnosed with type 2 in 12/07 and my daughter is borderline. I would also recommend going to the message boards on the ADA website they have a wonderful board called A Place for Parents. The parents there are so very helpful and informative, just like they are here.

    Good luck.

  6. tryinghard

    tryinghard New Member


    Thank you. I just logged into the website and it was very helpful.

    We have a doctors apt today at 11:15. I am still hoping I am wrong....
  7. tryinghard

    tryinghard New Member

    An update....

    We just returned from a three day stay in the hospital...difficult child has diabetes. His blood sugar was 450. Normal is 80-150. We were sent right from the pediatrian to the hospital ER. difficult child was so upset he initially refused to go to the hospital. We told him he had to go because his life depended on it. Once there it took four people holding him down as he screamed to get his first insulin shot. The good news is that Tuesday and today he has been a perfect angel.

    He has been diagnosis'd as ADHD and has severe learning disabilities. An now he has this cross to bear too. He looked outside the hospital window today and seemed very sad. I asked him, "what are you thinking" He said, "Why is my life like this" It broke my mommy heart..... I told him that I believe everything happens for a reason. I told him I believed that even though this doesn't seem good now, I believe he will look back on this someday and realize that it was the beginning of something good. I told him it is another adventure we are embarking on!

    So now I have a difficult child who can't remember homework, what he had for lunch, can't follow simple instructions.... AND we have to give two shots a day, test and record glucose levels six times a day, AND he has to eat specific amounts of carbs every three hours. Needless to say, we are all a little overwhelmed.

    Please pray for us and send us good thoughts. I now face a triple challenge!

    The good news is the doctors all praised me for recognizing the symptoms and getting him in before he was really sick and had permanent damage to his eyes and/or organs.
  8. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    You sound much better than you did in your initial post! Hop on-line and check with the American Diabetes Association about kid support groups in your area. This could open a whole new world for him. If there's one nearby, there will most likely be youth groups, forums, trips, etc. for him and others.

    Make sure that if there's one around a nutritionist who deals primarily with children. This will take a lot of the mystery of how the carbs/protiens etc. affect his body.

    Don't let him mourn the past make sure he's anticipating the future.

    By the way, there are also special summer camps for kids with JV.

    Remember what I told you about buying meters, test strips, needles, even alcohol swabs. Get prescriptions for every little thing - they'll be covered under most insurances.

    Get the school nurse on board as well. She'll be able to remind him about testing and shots. Make sure that you educate his teachers, paras and other staff members (Occupational Therapist (OT), pt, speech - anyone that he interacts with) as to the symptoms of high or low blood sugar.

    PM if you need anything. It's not a nightmare, just a different way of living!

  9. Christy

    Christy New Member

    Sounds like you are starting to gather the information you need. As others have said, diabetes, especially today is managable. I am type II and have been fortunate to manage it so far without taking insulin. Unfortuantely I don't think this is possible with type I. I am a teacher and had a student with type I diagnosed in first grade. Scary for the family but the little girl quickly learned to manage things herself. She went to the nurses office to check her blood sugars and gave herself insulin injections until she was put on an insulin pump (which she carried in a little fanny pack around her waist). There are alot of times in school where candy and snacks are provided and I'd suggest that you ask the teacher to let you know ahead of time so that you and your son can plan for it. Treats are okay as long as you keep a carb count. If there is any way to put a positive spin on this, maybe you could tell your son that unlike ADHD or a learning disability, diabetes is something you can control. You can get blood sugars where you want them with the right combination of carbs and medicine and checking your blood sugar offers immediate feedback on how things are working so adjustments can be made. He might find a boost of confidence by taking charge of this. Be sure to see that he is monitoring blood sugars and taking medications/insulin as required but try to let him take control. He may surprise you.

    Consider signing up for a diabetes camp this summer. They are lots of fun and will give your son a chance to meet other children in the same situation.

    I'm sorry your son has been dealt this hand and wish you the very best.
  10. tryinghard

    tryinghard New Member

    Thank you Beth and Christy,

    Yes, I am doing much better and so is my son. Today is the first day his blood sugar level is in the normal range. He has been great with his daily shots and eating the food that he needs too.

    My husband just commented to me about how "normal" he has been the last three days (since he has received two insulin shots a day). He has been very verbal, very calm, very mature, he has said "please and thank you" numerous times, he has followed every order we have given him without arguing. Honestly, it is a little strange. I am trying not to get my hopes up because I would LOVE to have this behavior continue......

    I will post again if his behavior stays improved. If it does, I am wondering if all the "rage and defiance episodes" could have been because his blood sugar was too low all along. I know irratiblity is one of the symptoms of low blood sugar. Hyperactivity is a symptom of high blood sugar.

    Anyway....thanks again for all your support and tips. Anything new I learn will be greatly appreciated.
  11. I am so glad that you are on the road to the right track (diabetes anyway). It will take some time and work from mom and dad , just remember that the people on the diabetes website can be a great resource for you as well. You know, I was reading on there about how when someone's child's blood sugar was high how full of rages and stuff they were. I hope that now that you are on the road to getting his under control that it will help you with his ADHD as well.

    Good luck to you.
  12. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    You may be surprised at some of the behavioral changes you see after you get the insulin under control. He could have been out of whack for a while now, and it really can cause some severe problems.
  13. tryinghard

    tryinghard New Member


    Ok, remember how I said his behavior has been PERFECT for the last three days (since he has received insulin) WELL this evening all of a sudden he started talking back and saying he would not go with us to take his friend home. Got mad and stormed upstairs. husband stayed calm and talked him into the car. He was very angry and sat in the back seat with a frown on his face and arms crossed. Once we got home we checked his blood glucose and BINGO is was below 70!!!! Once we gave him a half of cup of OJ, his glucose came up to 123 (normal) and he has been WONDERFUL all night.

    For those of you following this chain....I find this so interesting.
  14. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    I've got to tell you, when MY levels are wacky, I get wacky! I have the situation that when mine goes high, I'm exhausted, crabby and about as persnickety as I can get.

    When I go low, I get hyper, and then I "bottom out" and have to get something in me right away. My personal favorite: Social tea bisquits and peanut butter. I found when I add the protein to a carb I don't get what I call the "Insulin Hangover!!!" (say that with a booming narrator kind of voice).

    Wouldn't that be wonderful that you've found a physical way to have him check his levels? Whoa - step one in helping him remember to check!

    Keep us up to date!