Having a child with diabetes can give you an awful lot to think of carefully and the responsibility can be quite demanding. As a parent, the diagnosis can hit you a lot harder than your child and it can be hard to acknowledge just how much impact it can have on you. Some of the challenges you are likely to encounter include;
Watching out for hypos and being aware of hyperglycemia as well, monitoring and recording blood sugar levels regularly and making sure they are taking the doses right are all part of your child’s blood sugar management. This also includes the food intake, ensuring that you take blood glucose test before and after meals to know which foods are better for your child’s blood sugar controls than others is important. All these can be difficult and potentially stressful for any parent. Therefore, a little extra knowledge can be helpful.
Caring for a diabetic child comes with a huge financial burden. For a diabetic patient, insulin is a basic necessity. The bad news is that the cost of insulin has been going up steadily over the recent years. This can especially cause unwarranted distress to patients with financial difficulties. According to research, the cost of treating a child with diabetes is estimated at $10,000 a year making it about six times higher than treating children without the ailment. More research should, therefore, be done to find out ways in which the cost of treating diabetes in children can be cut down.
A diabetes diagnosis also triggers a lot of emotional issues for the child that can be challenging for parents to deal with. So, it is important for parents to recognize those feelings and learn ways to help them. Such feelings include denial, guilt, depression, anger, resentment and frustration, fear and anxiety, isolation, embarrassment and dependence. Majority of these emotions stem from your child’s relationship with people in general whether at home or in school. Once you learn to identify your child’s feelings, it’s important that you and your child work together to establish the best measures that can be taken to deal with the different emotions effectively.
Some parents have admitted that they often ignore their own well being for the sake of caring for their diabetic child together with their other kids. There is a higher prevalence of symptoms of sleep deprivation, distress, depression and anxiety in parents of children with diabetes. Studies show that about a third of parents of diabetic children reported psychological distress during diagnosis with the emotions continuing for one to four years in nearly 20% of the parents. This parental distress increases family conflict, interferes with family communication and can also have a negative impact on parents’ physical and mental health. The financial stress of treating a diabetic child can also take a toll on the parents.
Charity organizations are very important tools in the day to day fight against diabetes and the challenges that come with it. They offer education and support to people living with diabetes and even their loved ones. Money raised through charity not only funds treatment of diabetic patients and buying them the supplies they need, but also funds research to help speed new therapies to the market and finding a cure for the disease. Some charity organizations also organize camps for children living with diabetes, where they are given motivation and empowerment on how to live there life with the ailment. Therefore, as a parent to a diabetic child, involving yourself and your child with charity activities can really make a huge difference in your lives and that of others as well. The same goes to everyone else who have a giving heart.
Your child cannot face diabetes alone and will need you to always be at your best. But, whenever you are facing any challenge, don’t be afraid to ask your relatives and friends for support.