10 Things about diabetes that affects the family

  1. Always pack extra snacks for exam times or when your kids participate in sports. 
  2. Children whose blood sugar falls or spikes might find it difficult to concentrate when they do homework, study or write exams and might need some extra time. Plan for this time in the family’s schedule and apply for an amanuenses like extra time or breaks, should your child need this during exams. 
  3. Teach your kids what they can and can’t eat when they visit friends, buy from the tuck shop or when they feel that their blood sugar is dropping. 
  4. Establish coping strategies. When a family member is diagnosed with diabetes there is a possibility of diabetes related complications. This may cause feelings of anxiety and stress among family members.
  5. Avoid health complications through implementation of a proper management program. This will include healthy eating, exercise and managing medication. 
  6. Establish a strong support system to help you stick to the program. Inform close friend, family, colleagues, teachers, managers, etc. about your family member’s diabetes.
  7. Bullying is unfortunately one of the things that sometimes happen to children with diabetes and should be addressed. Children tend to victimise other children with diabetes because they are not always socially skilled to deal with illness.  
  8. Educate your child’s friends about diabetes to avoid your child feeling self-conscious and perhaps not taking their medication at school or having their snacks when they should. 
  9. It is beneficial to invest in a good medical insurance because diabetes management can be a huge financial burden.
  10. Take special care regarding eye health and wound care. Someone with diabetes’ wounds does not heal easily and their eyes are easily affected by diabetes.
In order to support the family member with diabetes, the entire family can follow a healthy low GI and sugar free diet.

You might want to read more about what you could do when your child has diabetes.