Type 1 Diabetes: Recently Diagnosed (cont.)
IN THIS ARTICLE
The focus of your treatment for type 1 diabetes is to keep your blood sugar level within a target range. This is called tight control. It is the best way to reduce your risk of diabetes complications. But some people—such as those whose blood sugar drops too low with tight control—may need to set a different target range with their doctor.
To keep your blood sugar in a target range, your daily treatment includes:
Chronic illnesses such as diabetes take a toll on your energy and emotions. It's normal to feel down sometimes. But if you feel seriously overwhelmed, tearful, and not yourself, you may be suffering from depression. Talk to your doctor if you feel depressed. Medicine, counseling, and other support can help you.
How often will I see my doctor?
At first, you will keep in close touch with your doctor while you are trying to find the right dose of insulin that best keeps your blood sugar levels within your target range. After your blood sugar levels are staying within this range, you will see your doctor about every 3 to 6 months. During these checkups, your doctor will evaluate and adjust your treatment. You will also start having exams and tests that check your blood sugar control and monitor your condition on a regular basis.
After you have had diabetes for 3 to 5 years, you will start having yearly exams and tests to watch for signs of complications, particularly eye and kidney damage. If your child has diabetes, this testing should begin at puberty.
What if I have diabetic ketoacidosis?
If your blood sugar level was very high at the time you were diagnosed with diabetes, you may have been treated for diabetic ketoacidosis. This life-threatening condition can happen to you again if you do not take enough insulin, have a severe infection or other illness, or become severely dehydrated. Treatment for diabetic ketoacidosis requires hospitalization and includes:
Will I need treatment during the honeymoon period?
If your blood sugar levels return to the normal range soon after diagnosis, you are in what is called the "honeymoon period." This is a time when the remaining insulin-producing cells in your pancreas are working harder to supply enough insulin for your body. Treatment during this time may include:
What To Think About
When your child has diabetes
Talk with your child's teachers and the staff at his or her school (or child care center) to develop a plan for diabetes care at school. This plan needs to include clear instructions for dealing with low blood sugar, when to test the child's blood sugar, contents of school meals and snacks, and emergency contact information.
Let your child with diabetes take part in his or her daily care to the extent that is appropriate for your child's age and development. For example, your 4-year-old child cannot be responsible for testing his or her blood sugar but can get out the supplies and perform some of the simpler steps. By the time your child is an adolescent, he or she should be able to take responsibility for his or her diabetes care, with appropriate supervision. For more information, see the topic Type 1 Diabetes: Children Living With the Disease.
Coping with the disease
You (or your child) have just been diagnosed with a disease that requires daily attention and will last for the rest of your life. It is hard to accept and adjust to all the lifestyle changes that you need to make, such as eating the right amount of carbohydrate at each meal and snack, giving injections every day, and coping with blood sugar variations.
Anger, resentment, or denial are normal feelings in these circumstances and can be expected because you are experiencing the loss of what your life was like before you got type 1 diabetes. Give yourself time to deal with your feelings and grieve your loss. For more information, see the topic Grief and Grieving.
eMedicineHealth Medical Reference from Healthwise
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