Type 1 vs Type 2
Until recently, the common type of diabetes in children and teens was type 1. It was called juvenile diabetes. With Type 1 diabetes, the pancreas does not make insulin. Insulin is a hormone that helps glucose, or sugar, get into your cells to give them energy. Without insulin, too much sugar stays in the blood.
But now younger people are also getting type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes used to be called adult-onset diabetes. But now it is becoming more common in children and teens, due to more obesity. With Type 2 diabetes, the body does not make or use insulin well.
Children have a higher risk of type 2 diabetes if they are obese, have a family history of diabetes, or are not active, and do not eat well. To lower the risk of type 2 diabetes in children
- Have them maintain a healthy weight
- Be sure they are physically active
- Have them eat smaller portions of healthy foods
- Limit time with the TV, computer, and video
Children and teens with type 1 diabetes may need to take insulin. Type 2 diabetes may be controlled with diet and exercise. If not, patients will need to take oral diabetes medicines or insulin. A blood test called the A1C can check on how you are managing your diabetes.