11 Myths about Kids with Diabetes

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4. Insulin cures diabetes

Some people still think diabetes is a curable disease, and they think insulin is a super-simple approach to fixing the problem. If you have a kid with diabetes, people may ask why your child was feeling so good last week but is now having complications. They may ask why you still struggle to control your diabetes or wonder when he or she will be able to get off insulin and be “cured.” And the answer is never. Many outside factors influence how we’ll we’re able to control diabetes, and insulin is not a magic cure.

Insulin pen

3. Kids with diabetes can’t exercise

All kids, regardless of whether they have diabetes, should exercise. In fact, exercise is particularly important for children with diabetes, because it helps control their blood sugar. It reduces stress, improves mood, and makes for a healthy heart. It also helps lessen the risk of excess weight gain, which will help them control their diabetes more successfully later in life.

orphan, unhappy boy sitting on a park bench and crying

2. Having a pump means you don’t have to worry about insulin.

We wish. Having diabetes is a 24/7 job. Every time a person with diabetes who has a pump eats, a calculation needs to be done to determine how much insulin to pump based on what is being eaten. For parents of kids with diabetes, this means it is very difficult to allow your kid to go somewhere without you, since they will be entirely on their own with those calculations (or you’ll have to teach another parent how to care for them). Insulin is not a cure, and it’s not even a very simple treatment; it’s simply the sword we wield against our invisible enemy–useless unless we know how to employ it properly.

Happy kids silhouettes on sunset background

1. Kids with diabetes don’t have to take their insulin or pills when they’re sick

It is especially important to take your insulin when you’re sick. Your child’s insulin dose may need to be adjusted based on whether they’re not eating much or throwing up what they do eat, but they still need some insulin to help give their body the energy it needs to heal itself. Talk to your doctor about how much insulin to give while your child is ill.

sick girl resting in bed with fever meassuring temperature with

What’s something you wish people knew about your child with diabetes? Tell us in the comments!

Want to see more content about kids and diabetes? Well, that’s what we’re bringing you this Diabetes Awareness Month! Click “next” to see five-year-old Legacy check his blood sugar all on his own!

Elizabeth Nelson is a wordsmith, an alumna of Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, a four-leaf-clover finder, and a grammar connoisseur. She has lived in west Michigan since age four but loves to travel to new (and old) places. In her free time, she. . . wait, what’s free time?
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