A diagnosis like diabetes changes habits for life. When it comes to children, the worries are even greater. Excessive thirst is a suggestive symptom of the disease, but there are other signs that should give parents something to think about.
In our country, the number of cases of type I diabetes (insulin-dependent) in children is increasing, statistics show. The disease, which is the most common endocrine condition in children, is characterized by a chronic increase in blood sugar, as a result of the alteration or disruption of insulin secretion. According to primary pediatrician Corina Cîlcic, the probability of developing diabetes is equal in both girls and boys. The condition can appear at any age, including babies who are only a few months old.
Excessive thirst and frequent trips to the toilet, among the symptoms
In children, the disease can be more difficult to detect than in adults. The onset of the disease can be rapid, acute or slow. The most common symptoms are excessive thirst and poiluria (increase in the amount of urine in 24 hours, which also means going to the toilet more often). At the same time, there are headaches, continuous weight loss, fatigue, a low appetite or, on the contrary, an increase in appetite and an exaggerated desire for sweets. The child may also have states of irritability, apparently inexplicable. If they notice such symptoms, parents must take their child to a specialist consultation.
The necessary investigations
After thorough examinations, including blood sugar and glycosuria (measurement of the level of glucose in the urine), the doctor establishes the diagnosis. Other investigations may be necessary, such as kidney and thyroid function tests. In children, type I diabetes is insulin-dependent, so that, after establishing the diagnosis, it is very important to establish the diet and insulin treatment adapted to each individual patient, both in terms of doses and type of insulin.
The first born, higher risk of diabetes
It seems that the risk of diabetes would be higher in the case of the first born child. This is the conclusion of a study by researchers from the University of Auckland in New Zealand, in which 85 children without health problems participated. Of these, 32 were the first born in the family. Scientists are of the opinion that these children are more likely to get the disease because they have more difficulties in absorbing sugars from the body, they have a 21% lower sensitivity to insulin.
Dr. Corina Cîlcic, primary pediatrician, Sanador Hospital
Diabetes is a condition that can be accompanied by numerous symptoms. These can be acute (such as hypoglycemia, hyperglycemia or ketosis) or chronic, such as renal, ocular, vascular manifestations or diabetic neuropathy, at older ages. Since it is a chronic disease, both children and their families are included in special follow-up programs, in order to avoid or delay the onset of complications as much as possible.
3,000 of children in our country are diagnosed with diabetes. Approximately 60% of them are aged between 6 and 18 years.