In Conversation With a Type 1 Mum

Mum and I had a rather interesting conversation with a type 1 Mum at the insulin pump information evening that we attended last week.

I’m always drawn to stories of type 1 parents and younger children. I was diagnosed at the age of 17, where I was able to manage my diabetes independently most of the time. My parents didn’t have such a “hands on” role as they may have if I was diagnosed at a younger age. I guess, overall, we would both have completely different experiences in diabetes management.

Type 1 Mum was at the insulin pump evening for her 9 year old daughter, who was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 4. She was also interested in a Continuous Glucose Monitor, as her young daughter would often neglect to test her blood glucose levels at school or fib about the numbers. Obviously at such a young age, her daughter does not fully realise the importance of why she has to test her blood glucose.

At school, her daughter had a close group of friends who all knew about her diabetes. This year, however, has proven more challenging with class groups being swapped around. The children will often share food at lunchtime, without fully understanding the implications of her daughter eating something like a lollipop. The school also has an aid in the classroom to help with blood glucose tests and insulin injections. However since turning 9, she is expected to be able to manage diabetes on her own at school. She is lucky, however, that the aids there for other children will also check on her at lunchtime.

Out of my own curiosity, I asked Type 1 Mum whether she regularly checks her daughter’s blood glucose levels during the night. She told me that she would normally test once during the night, at around 1am. Her daughter would normally sleep through the nightly blood glucose tests. If the result showed up low, they would “sleep-feed” her glucose tabs and juice boxes.

She also asked me about if I test through the night, being an older person. I told her that, obviously, for myself, I am very motivated to check my blood glucose levels. The decision to test during the night would come down to how confident I am that my BGL will remain stable. If I eat junk food in the late afternoon, I know that the fat will send my BGLs up after I go to bed. But there are other days where I have eaten well, and I am confident I will remain stable.

It was great chatting with you, Type 1 Mum. Best of luck with the decision you choose to make.

A cracking walk on a cracking #DOCtober Friday.

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