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The Basics that People need to Know

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by shannong, Feb 24, 2016.

  1. shannong

    shannong Approved members

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    Hi there, my son is 10 years old and has had diabetes for over 3 years now. He generally plays with friends he has known for years and whose parents are well aware that he has Type 1. He's usually in the neighborhood too with a cell pone and dex tabs, so I have never had many concerns. This weekend he is going out for the day to an event downtown with a friend's family. The friend is someone in his class, but I would only know the parents to wave and say hi to them (I'm not even sure that they know he has diabetes). Just curious what do you tell other parents that are looking after your child? (specifically around 10 years old).

    Thanks!
     
  2. quiltinmom

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    I basically tell them only what they really need to know, or what I want them to do. Perhaps they will only have to remind your son to test or bolus, or maybe they will need to do more than that.


    It depends a little on how much the d child can do on their own, and the activities they will be doing. I would stick with carb counting/bolusing for everything he eats, treating highs/lows, how often to test, and what to watch for as far as high or low bgs. I might put the most important things on a paper or small note card for reference, such as what bg ranges need to be treated, because these things can be hard to remember later. And that I'm just a phone call/text away for any questions, no matter how small.

    If you think he can do some of those things on his own, maybe mention it briefly, but don't go into too much detail.
    Does he have a pump or cgm? Brief them on what those are , but if your son can operate them himself, let him do it.

    Good luck! I hope he has a great day out with his friend. :)
     
  3. Sarah Maddie's Mom

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    Assuming he has a phone, I'd start with the kid, not the other parents. Sit down, talk through the plan for the outing, when he might need to be paying attention to things, when you want him to text or call, if you'll be helping to make carb counting decisions. Just explain that he has the freedom to go spend the day with his new friend but that he has certain responsibilities and has to do them if he wants more days like this. Then I'd call the parents, inform them that he has Type 1 and they will see him checking, bolusing, maybe treating. Give them an extra juice box or two just to have handy, ask that if he does need to deal with a low that they give him a chance to do so. Thank them for having him out and remind them that they can call you if they have any concerns but that most likely they won't need to.

    Good luck!
     
  4. dshull

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    This advice is the best - our son is 11 and we spend more time talking to him ahead of time than the other parents. When he's been out without us it has usually been with people who know he is type 1 and ask us questions. I always make it clear that he should call us anytime, for any reason. Sometimes I think other parents (nicely) want to give us a break and tell our son he doesn't need to call us, but I would rather hear from him than not.

    He will do great!
     
  5. andiej

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    I tend to keep it to the basics if that, I'll say he has Type 1 Diabetes but he knows what he needs to do, but if you have any concerns or if he appears unwell please call me straight away. I believe with the slightly older kids they know more about there own care than anyone who we just pass a bit of information on to in fact other than ourselves they know more than anyone so can be there own best carers i feel i only need the parent to be aware that things can go wrong and if they do they just need to phone me.
     
  6. shannong

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    Thank you for all of your replies. My son is very independent in his care, but he is still a 10 year old boy so sometimes he does things like ignore the alarms on his dexcom so I do think I will ask parents to remind him to check before they go skating (that is the plan). I really like the suggestion to talk to my son first and let him know what is required of him. Do you ever talk about "worst case scenario" with another parent ie. a bad low where he goes unconscious or seizures? I think the odds of that are so minor (he feels his lows and has a dexcom), that I wonder if this would just scare people or is this information they need to know?
     
  7. scarral

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    My son was diagnosed this past October, so I'm no expert in any of these matters. However I do think it's important to tell them exactly that: "there is a very remote possibility that he might become unconscious, in which case call 911 and tell them he's diabetic, then call me." I've had a couple of friends learn about my son's diabetes and his care with the pump in case we ever need him to stay with them, and they're all aware of that. You can stress the unlikelyhood of that happening, but I don't think is wise to not mention it at all.
     
  8. Sarah Maddie's Mom

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    Well, I guess we all have to find our own comfort level with this stuff. Personally, I have elected to err on the side of not telling first timers the worst case scenario because I think for a lot of folks that would be too much for a kid they hardly know. Obviously I wouldn't send my kid off to climb mount everest with such folks, but just a day out? No, I wouldn't. That said, as relationships progress and day trips become overnights and overnights become a weekend then I share a bit more if I thought it will actually make my kid safer. Fact is the best thing I did to keep my kid safe was to gradually develop good, reliable communication and a gradual understanding of her role in keeping herself safe. It's not easy but giving newbies TMI can isolate your kid - you just have to find a balance you can live with :)
     
  9. rgcainmd

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    I agree so much with what Sarah has said. Through trial and error, we discovered that it is actually possible to give some parents "too much" information in our attempts to keep our children safe. For example: shortly after my daughter was diagnosed, she was invited to a sleepover (she was 11.5 years old at the time). From the start, I made a promise to my daughter and myself that I wouldn't let T1D dictate what I allowed her to do. In other words, if I would have let her do "X" before she was diagnosed with T1D, then T1D wouldn't change what would have been a "yes" into a "no". So back to that first sleepover (when she was still on MDI and no Dexcom): I gave the parents written and verbal instructions on everything I could think of regarding caring for a CWD. I told them that I would be calling my daughter on her cell phone throughout the night so she could check her BG and I could instruct her on what to do (remember, this was pre-Dexcom days for us) and that I would only contact them if I was unable to awaken my daughter. I think it was the glucagon instructions that were the camel's straw, however. Although these parents (reluctantly) agreed to have her over, she was never invited to any other (even relatively brief daytime) activities by this family, even though our daughters remained close friends until they moved away. My daughter asked her friend why she no longer got to do anything at her friend's house or wasn't invited along to go to the mall if the friend's mom was taking her. Her friend said it was because her parents were too scared that something bad would happen and they didn't want to be responsible. Within a short time, they didn't allow their daughter to do very much at all with my daughter at our home; I suspect this was out of guilt because they stopped inviting my daughter over. A few similar scenarios with other parents and I learned that, if I didn't want my daughter to have no social life, telling other parents minimum "basics" was the way to go. It worked: my daughter stopped being excluded from "invitation" activities. I had to find the balance between keeping my daughter safe and allowing her to continue being a normal kid.
     
  10. dshull

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    I did the exact same thing! I scared off a babysitter by showing her the glucagon. And my husband and I were a mile away at a school meeting; that was definitely more info than she needed. I tend to not give worst case scenarios, as I feel like the chances of things going that badly so quickly are much less with a dexcom. For an afternoon out, I would not give the worst case scenarios. For an overnight, I might, depending on how far away my son would be. We have been lucky in that all of his sleepovers thus far have been with friends very close by and I figured we could get there fast enough to deal with anything really scary.

    My son had a sleepover about a month ago and we had Nightscout up and could see his BG. Phone rings at 4 AM and we're freaking out - turns out he had thrown up in the middle of the night. Completely not diabetes related, just regular run of the mill kid stomach bug. And the poor mom almost called an ambulance thinking he was throwing up because his BG was too high
     
  11. scarral

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    I wouldn't expect anyone but us (his immediate family) to give him a glucagon shot if needed. Kindergarten is not even allowed to do it where we live. If he was to go visit a friend for a few hours, I don't see the need of them knowing anything about glucagon.

    Our babysitter has diabetes herself, so I'd expect her to give him glucagon if he needed it, but only because she has diabetes. Any other person or caregiver should just call an ambulance in case he faints, and tell them that he has diabetes.
     

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