Friday, 29 January 2016

We Have Moved! Check out the New Website!

Delighted to announce after the success of the site we have moved to a new domain. I have big plans for the future of Children With Type 1 Diabetes, we will continue to provide all the news and information you have come to expect but we are hoping to also launch a support system for parents in due course.

You can visit it our brand new website now

Thank you for all your interest and support and we hope you become a regular reader on our new website.

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Our First Type 1 Teen Trauma

So this week it finally happened. Our first Type 1 Teen Trauma. Technically he's 12 so not a Teen yet but Jack started secondary school in September and our lives have changed seemingly overnight. Being an active member in the support groups for parents of Type 1 Children on Facebook, I knew it was only a matter of time before we ran into teenage problems surrounding the intensive day to day care that is required in managing this demanding condition.

Jack was diagnosed 2 years ago, when he was safely in a primary school environment. He has pretty much been the model child with taking care of himself in that time. Religiously do his checks independently and giving insulin through his pump each lunch time.

Unfortunately he has always experienced some embarrassment about being Type 1. Only confident to test and bolus in front of close friends and family.  Let's face it no teen or tween likes to be different and Type 1 is just so darn difficult to deal with at a time when all kids want to do is blend in. 

This embarrassment is what led to our first Type 1 teen trauma on Monday. I picked him up from school and asked him to do a scan with his Freestyle Libre, straight away, the screen just read LO. A quick glance at the screen whilst digging around for a pot of glucose tablets revealed he'd been low for sometime. "What number were you at lunch?" I asked. "Oh I didn't bother doing a check" he replies oh so casually.  Further inspection of the graph shows he'd been low 1 hour before lunch at 12pm, it was now nearly 4pm. I was horrified and mortified and all the other words that end with ied. 

Sheer fear means I jump in with both feet. I may not have shouted but how I approached it must have felt like an attack. Of course I tell him he has to check before Lunch as a minimum. Of course I tell him he can't give insulin without knowing what number he is. How does he respond? "Well in that case I just won't eat lunch". WHAT THE HELL!! 

At this point it's quite obvious we aren't getting anywhere. So I do what a million Type 1 Mums have done before. I bite down HARD on my tongue. Clearly we both need to calm down.

When we arrive home I do what I usually do when Type 1 throws a challenge down. I head to the reliable Type 1 Parents group on Facebook for a rant and advice.  Advice floods in from parents more experienced than I with dealing with Type 1 Teens. I feel better just for getting it off my chest...though it's a sad thought to think that Jack doesn't have an independent outlet for his frustrations. The general consensus from those that have lived through these tough years is I need to remain calm and not antagonize the situation, I needed to keep the lines of communication open.

Knowing Jack as I do, I should have known better than to just fly off the handle, he's a defensive type and doesn't respond well in those situations. He's my son, we're close, I know him well. It dawns on me that he understands emotions far more than anger. he doesn't like to upset people.

So after dinner, I choose my moment carefully, when he isn't mid conversation on Skype or messing about with his friends on X Box. I use my calmest voice and say something along the lines of "Jack you scared me today, you could have killed yourself, I really need you to be checking your levels at school". He wants to know how he could have killed himself so I explained about Insulin Overdose. He seems to take it on board and agrees to check the next day.

Of course all through the next day I'm desperately wondering if he followed through with it, or if he was just fobbing me off. I was delighted to get in from work to find out he had checked.

So it seems on this occasion that calm communication worked. I'm not naive, I know there will be more Teen Traumas to come but I have a game plan now. I've learnt a lesson. It might not work next time but my Facebook pals will be there handing out the advice when we have to cross that bridge. I'll always be grateful.  If you are struggling with a Type 1 Teen and need support, here are some links to Facebook Support groups that I recommend.

Children With Diabetes

Parents Of Children with Type 1 Diabetes

Parents of Type 1 Teens.

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Friday, 22 January 2016

Freestyle Libre For Children - Review 2016

The Freestyle Libre burst onto the pharmaceutical market at the end of 2014, the World's first Flash Glucose Monitoring System. With a marketing headline "Why prick when you can scan?" it's no wonder that thousands of people snapped them up the day they went on sale.

Unfortunately many parents of children with Type 1 Diabetes were disappointed to see that the product wasn't licensed for use in under 18's. Excitingly rumour has it that any day now the Freestyle Libre will have a Pediatric licence also.  Though many parents including us went ahead and ordered this revolutionary system anyway.

There are many reviews of the Freestyle Libre available on the internet but not that many from parents using it on their children so I wanted to share our experience. We have now been using it for well over a year so it's safe to say we know the product inside out.


As I mentioned previously it's a Flash Glucose Monitoring System. It consists of 2 parts, a small sensor that is worn on the arm and a hand held scanning device, as you can see in the picture below.

Handheld scanner and sensor

Thursday, 14 January 2016

Average HBA1C By Age - Children with Type 1 Diabetes

As part of my recent study to understand what affects HBA1C results in Children with Type 1 Diabetes, today I wanted to look at the average HBA1C by age. The aim is to find out which are the easiest years to get the best control and which are the hardest. I will also be looking to see if insulin regime also plays a part, for example do teens do better with an Insulin Pump or MDI.

In 2015 over 300 parents of Children with Type 1 Diabetes  participated in a survey that I carried out online. All participants were members of various support groups on Facebook. It became apparent that this group of children already had better HBA1C results than the national average, probably because these parents are amongst the most committed to improving blood glucose control for their children.


The overall average HBA1C of the group was 7.8%.  Here we take a look at the average HBA1C by age group. It makes very interesting reading.

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Does CGMS Improve Blood Glucose Control in Children?

Today I wanted to share with you the findings of my study to discover if CGMS improves blood glucose control in children.


CGMS stands for Continuous Glucose Monitoring System. A very basic explanation of CGMS, a user wears a sensor on their body that checks the glucose levels in interstitial fluid, a transmitter then sends this constant data to a display, therefore users can see constantly what their levels are. They also have alarms for high and low levels.

At this time very few children in the UK have access to CGMS, funding from the NHS is not readily available in most areas, therefore many parents self fund these expensive systems.

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Insulin Pump VS MDI - Which Gives The Best Control For Children With Type 1 Diabetes

Insulin Pump VS MDI, it's a dilemma for many parents of children with Type 1 Diabetes, at some point in their journey. The benefits of an insulin pump are promoted as giving better control and also improving quality of life, though for most people the transition from MDI to Insulin Pump is quite scary.

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Does My Child Have Diabetes?

Does my child have Diabetes? This is the question I started asking myself a couple of weeks before Christmas in 2013, if you're asking yourself this very question read on to discover our story and the facts about Type 1 Diabetes Symptoms.

 As a family we have always been Diabetes aware to some degree as my Grandmother developed Type 1 Diabetes in later years, and my Dad has Type 2. Though not all children diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes have a relative with the condition.

Some time between September and December my 10 year old son started to lose weight. By mid December he had lost at least a stone, whilst he was probably on the heavier side he could never be described as fat but suddenly he became very slim. To be fair he looked great, I put the weight loss down to him being more active now the football season had started.

Around November he seemed to have days where he was very thirsty. Not every day though, I put this down to the fact that he wasn't drinking enough on some days so was really thirsty on others. I then started to notice that if we stopped at the shop on the way home from school he became more concerned with buying a drink than an after school snack. The thirst at times though was insatiable, he'd down a couple of large glasses in a row. Both Grandmothers even commented on it andit was ath that point that i really thought I should get him checked out.

Though as most modern day Mums do I first turned to Dr Google!  I had googled "Does My Child Have Diabetes" and whilst most articles online described the thirst and weight loss as a symptom, many articles led me to believe that if he did have Type 1 Diabetes he would be feeling very poorly indeed and this just wasn't the case with my son.