Type 1 Diabetes

A Guide for Newly Diagnosed Diabetics

To Whom It May Concern

This brochure was designed for newly diagnosed diabetics and their families.

In addition, it can be a useful tool for anyone who may come in contact with Type 1 diabetics, especially parents, babysitters, recreation leaders, teachers, and nurses. It is vital that school personnel, day care workers, and babysitters be knowledgeable about the basic facts of diabetes care and what to do in case of an emergency.

General Background

Type 1 Diabetes, previously known as Insulin-dependent diabetes, is not an infectious disease. It results from the body's inability to produce its own insulin – a hormone which is needed to help convert sugar or food into energy.

This form of diabetes results from the body’s destruction of its own insulin-producing cells. Type 1 diabetes is treated with multiple insulin injections or an insulin pump. The pump is an insulin-delivering device, often worn attached to a belt. It can easily be mistaken for a beeper or a cell phone.

Although diabetes cannot yet be cured, it can be effectively managed by monitoring blood sugar levels and balancing insulin injections or oral medications, with individual meal planning and exercise. Children with diabetes can participate in all organized activities and should not be excluded due to this medical condition. It is important for personnel with oversight responsibility to meet with parents of children with diabetes to obtain more detailed information about each child’s abilities and individual requirements. Communication and cooperation between the parents, children, and school personnel or child care providers can help each child have a positive and productive experience.

Role of Blood Sugar Monitoring and Adjustment

Your blood sugar will generally be tested at each meal and before going to bed. You may need to check more often if you are sick or if there are changes in your diabetes treatment or daily habits. You may need an insulin pump provided by an endocrinologist or other plan that aims for very close control of blood sugar levels.

In addition to daily checks, the A1C blood test will be given which ascertains the average lifespan of a red blood cell. It is performed every 3-4 months to see if the glucose in your body is being used correctly or if adjustments need to be made.

Recommendations for Exercise and Lifestyle

It is important to exercise at least one hour every day. This keeps an overall lower body mass which helps lower the insulin requirements. First choose what exercise you can do. Remember to ask your doctor to make sure you are ready for it. They'll also check to see if you need to change your meals, insulin, or diabetes medicines. Your doctor can also let you know if the time of day you exercise matters.

Always get a doctor's permission to take part in any formal sports, as you need to inform your coaches about your condition if anything happens, such as hypoglycemia. Although they should already know what to do, make sure your condition is explained in case of emergency,

Checking your Blood Sugar. Ask your doctor if you should check it before exercise. If you plan to work out for more than an hour, check your blood sugar levels regularly during your workout, so you’ll know if you need a snack. Check your blood sugar after every workout, so that you can adjust if needed.

Carry carbs. Always keep a small carbohydrate snack, like fruit or a fruit drink, on hand in case your blood sugar gets low.

into it. If you're not active now, start with 10 minutes of exercise at a time. Gradually work up to 30 minutes a day.

Strength train at least twice a week. It can improve blood sugar control. You can lift weights or work with resistance bands. Or you can do moves like push-ups, lunges, and squats, which use your own body weight.

Make it a habit. Exercise, eat, and take your medicines at the same time each day to prevent low blood sugar, also called hypoglycemia

Go public. Work out with someone who knows you have diabetes and knows what to do if your blood sugar gets too low. It's more fun, too. Also wear a medical identification tag, or carry a card that says you have diabetes, just in case.

Symptoms of DIabetes

The symptoms for uncontrolled or untreated diabetes are often the same and might include the following:
• Frequent urination

• Unusual or excessive thirst

• Rapid and unexplained weight loss

• Extreme weakness or fatigue

• Nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain

• Infections or sores that are slow to heal

• Unusual or unexplained irritability

• Unusual or uncontrollable cravings for food

• Blurred vision

Common Warning Signs of Insulin Reactions

People with diabetes may experience one or more of these symptoms that cannot otherwise be explained:

• Trembling

• Unusual actions

• Perspiring or responses

• Pallor

• Blurred

• Poor coordination double vision

• Lack of concentration

• Crying

• Confusion

• Headache

• Dizziness

• Nausea

• Irritability

• Drowsiness

• Nervousness

• Fatigue