Juvenile Diabetes

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Juvenile diabetes is a type of disease caused by the lack of insulin production in a child. It is essentially type 1 diabetes in children and it occurs when the pancreas does not produce needed insulin for the body, which can lead to possible health complications and fatal reactions. The condition is also referred to as insulin-dependent diabetes, due to its high dependency on this vital hormone.

The Causes of Juvenile Diabetes

The immune system is one of the vital systems in our body, responsible for protecting us against possible diseases and infections. However, when the immune system fails to do its job and begins to destroy the beta cells of the pancreas, it can affect the pancreas ability to produce insulin. Extremely early on in a child’s life, diabetes type 1 takes a toll and it leads to a full deficiency of insulin.Pretty Hispanic Female Doctor with Child Patient and Colleague Behind Isolated on a White Background.
Combinations of inherited and environmental factors also play a role in juvenile diabetes. It is not known for sure what specific types genes lead to inherited factors, but doctors are sure it can play a factor. As for environmental factors, it is believed a particular virus gives the pancreas the wrong impression, leading it to attack its own beta cells.

Why We Need Insulin

The insulin hormone is produced by the pancreas, which is also responsible for a number of other enzymes used for food breakdown in the stomach. Insulin is responsible for converting sugar and glucose content into energy. Our body needs energy to function and most of it is gained from the glucose count in our body. When we eat a meal, the pancreas releases a proportional amount of insulin in comparison with the amount of sugar found in our meal.
Insulin is essentially responsible for moving nutrients such as sugar to the various cells in the body. If you were to look at the cell at a microscopic level, you will notice even it needs energy to function in the body. As you can see, when the body becomes insulin-dependent, it can lead to high blood sugar levels – leading to many health complications and fatalities.

Juvenile diabetes can lead to:

Blood sugar levels are never below the recommended average for someone who has juvenile diabetes. Due to the lack of the vital hormones in the regulation of glucose conversion, there are a number of health problems that may arise, which include the following:

  • Weight Loss – As the cells become deprived of energy from sugar and glucose, the body is required to take it from other parts of the body. The next best place for the body to gain energy from is the calories you intake. A large chunk of the energy your body requires will then be taken from your caloric intake, resulting in severe weight loss.
  • Dehydration – When the overall sugar count in the body increases, it potentially leads to more frequent urination. It’s the body’s way of trying to expel all the excess sugar content, as there is no insulin to reduce glucose levels. However, it is not just glucose that is being expelled, as a lot of water content is also being removed from the body, resulting in dehydration.
  • Stroke & Heart Attack – With high amounts of sugar content in the blood vessels, it could lead to the hardening of blood, leading to atherosclerosis. When the blood vessels are blocked by clots, it deprives certain parts of the body of oxygenated blood – leading to heart attack and strokes.

Juvenile diabetes, sometimes referred to as type 1 diabetes, should be controlled very early on, as it can also lead to life-threatening complications as well. A few of the serious problems that can arise from uncontrolled juvenile diabetes including the following:

  • Kidney Damage – When the disease is not controlled through insulin injections and proper meal planning, it could cause kidney damage. It is interlinked with heart disease as well, which develops over fifteen to twenty years from the onset of the disease. One quarter of patients who have uncontrolled type I diabetes develop kidney damage, also known as nephropathy.
  • Retinopathy – Without proper management of juvenile diabetes, blurred vision and retinopathy are common problems that may arise. On average, eighty percent of adults with uncontrolled diabetes type I develop vision problems. However, through specialized treatments, these health complications can be prevented.

Symptoms of Juvenile Diabetes

As with both types of diabetes, juvenile diabetes also has its symptoms that you should be carefully looking out for. If these symptoms are not taken seriously, it can lead to possible health complications that are not fun to deal with. Some of the symptoms of juvenile diabetes include:
• Increased Thirst and Hunger (Even Once You’ve Eaten)
• Nausea, Vomiting, Dry Mouth
• Frequent Urination
• Heavy Breathing, Fatigue
• Blurred Vision
• Abdominal Pain
• Infections of the Urinary Tract or Skin

Mentioned above are the general symptoms of type 1 diabetes, as there are more serious symptoms which require immediate medical attention. If you notice some of the following symptoms with someone who has juvenile diabetes, they should be given immediate medical attention:
• Unconsciousness
• Severe Abdominal Pain
• Shaking and Confusion
• Breath Begins to Smells Fruity
• Rapid & Heavy Breathing

Diagnosing Juvenile Diabetes

If you suspect that you may have type I diabetes, there are several ways it can be diagnosed. The doctor will begin by checking the blood sugar levels to make sure they are at levels considered normal. If you have abnormal levels of sugar content in your blood, it can be a clear sign of diabetes type 1. Additionally, there are diabetes blood tests you may need to undergo to safely know where the issue is.

Unfortunately, there are no medical treatments and preventative care methods to prevent juvenile diabetes. Similarly, there are no real cures for treating juvenile diabetes, as there are just ways of managing it.

Managing Juvenile Diabetes

If diabetes type 1 is managed from the start, it can help you live a long and healthy life with no related complications. As your glucose levels play a crucial role in the management of diabetes, it is important to keep it under the threshold. The best way to manage diabetes type 1 or 2 is through proper exercising, meal planning and insulin therapy. If you have juvenile diabetes, you need to be taking insulin injections to control the condition.
Insulin injections and pumps are a common way of controlling total blood sugar levels in the body. Many people use an insulin pen with a needle at the tip and connected to a vial. The needle needs to be changed before each injection, while the vial is used until it is completely empty. It is a lot more convenient and easier to use than a syringe.

Regular blood checks are required to be able to better manage and make changes to your meal plans and insulin injections, so as to keep your blood sugar levels in good standing. Juvenile diabetes treatment can be successfully if followed accordingly with directions from your doctor, which allows you to live a long and healthy life.