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How do you?

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by new d dad, Jun 13, 2010.

  1. new d dad

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    Hi i'm new here, my son is 2 & was diagnosed with type1 a few days ago.

    How can we help him understand what is going on & why he cannot eat when he wants to & why he always seems to be getting poked.

    All he has to do is see us get his test stuff or injector & starts freaking out before we even get close to him with them.

    thanks
     
  2. lauraqofu

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    Hi, sorry to hear about the diagnosis. I can't imagine what it's like to have a child diagnosed so young.

    I'm new to this, too as my dd was diagnosed about two months ago, so I can't offer much in the way of advice, except to say that your son can eat whatever he wants, he just has to have insulin to cover it...unless your endo has you on a special diet for the time being, but otherwise, there's no reason why he has to be deprived of treats.

    I'm sure more experienced parents, and those with younger T1 kids, will chime in and give you great advice. I've gotten excellent support and advice here...
     
  3. StillMamamia

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    Hi and welcome.

    I am sorry for the dx.:(

    The best thing you can do right now is to explain in 2yr old language that his belly has a huge ouchie and that the injections help his ouchie feel better.:(

    I also think if we try to consciously calm ourselves down and not try to make a big deal of testing (or injection) time, our kids will also calm a little bit. Anything which works, goes, in my opinion. Be it do it fast, watching cartoons, talking about nonsense while injecting, bribing (not my favorite, but hey, whatever works with little ones), having a stuffed animal who "suffers" from the same and also gets fake injections, etc, etc.

    May I ask why he can't eat certain things? Is this what the endo recommended? Is your insulin regimen very strict? What insulins are you using?

    We have never followed a "this is not allowed" diet. Everything is, in moderation, but we've found certain foods are just not worth the annoyance of not dosing correctly, so we have them rarely (but we still have them).

    If you're interested, take a look at the glycemic index of foods. There's a good book out there on using the GI table for T1 D. That is not to say that you can't have ice cream or cake sometimes.

    Best of luck!
     
  4. new d dad

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    The docs told us he could eat anything he wants at mealtimes but the snacks cannot be over 15 carbs & nothing after bedtime.

    Although he can drink all the low cal zero carb drinks he wants. If it helps he is on novalog during the day & 4 units of lantus at night
     
  5. lauraqofu

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    If the snacking is an issue...how about no carb snacks? Cheese sticks, salami, eggs, that sort of thing? One of my daughter's favorite things to do is take lunch meat and a cheese slice and roll them up together...
     
  6. new d dad

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    One thing is we have all had to change is our eating, so i think that is throwing him off.

    He is not overweight by any means, but he has never been told he could not have something or not have as much as he wants, until now & i think he wants it to go back to how it was before
     
  7. Anja821

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    It always breaks my heart to hear of new cases, especially in kids so young. My son was also 2 when diagnosed. He's 7 now. He was and still is a grazer so it was very difficult to manage his eating. We just had to make lots of substitutions. We were fortunate that he liked tomatoes and carrots and would eat them to his heart's content. Making the switch to sugar free jello and puddings wasn't hard and that gave him the sweets he wanted without messing with his BGs too much.

    Our problem came with the "you must eat 45g of carbs with every meal." Yeah, right. No 2 year old I know eats that much at every meal!!! After 4-5 months, I told the endo we needed to be on the pump. He wasn't thrilled, but approved the request and by 6 months post-dx, we were pumping. I truly believe that is the best way to go with such a young child. Small doses of insulin for small appetites!

    Good luck to you and your little man.
     
  8. lynn

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    My son was diagnosed at two as well. It is a challenge, to say the least (and the obvious:rolleyes:), but I think that if you make a short sentence or two that you repeat all the time when doing his pokes then it may become easier for all of you. I remember telling Nathan that he needed to have the finger pokes, "because you could get sick if we don't know what your blood sugar is." And the shots were, "medicine to help his body not get sick." Kids who are two can understand "sick"---especially so close to diagnosis. I explained over and over that I needed to take care of him because I love him. I told him that we can get angry about it all but we still have to do it. We did the angry dance many, many times! It got us all laughing instead of fighting about it. Distraction and silliness is your friend with a two year old!!

    About the food; he is probably VERY hungry! Before diagnosis his body was starving from the inability to use the glucose in his blood. It now wants to regain what it lost. I would suggest that you take a trip to the grocery store and stock up on free things that he likes: pickles, cheese, lunch meat, eggs, sf jello, sausage, veggies, etc. He can eat those anytime he wants. I remember emptying a drawer in the fridge for Nathan's "special food". He LOVED it and it helped to take the sting out of being told he couldn't have the thing he was asking for.

    Things will get better. Life will settle down sooner than you can imagine. Then you'll be getting choked up at your baby's ability to take so many pokes without even batting an eye!
     
  9. NomadIvy

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    I'm so sorry for the diagnosis. Wish you didn't have to be here. We're relatively new to this too and I'm sure you'll get lots of good information here and suggestions.

    Someone mentioned something before how it might be easier for one to be younger at diagnosis because it'll be the only kind of life they'll know/remember, :cwds: Don't know about that... but I guess the hardest part about all this is not being able to eat when you want to (others might disagree). Meaning, they can't "graze" anymore. Or, it's tough when they're in the middle of their sleep and you have to wake them up to drink some juice. The toughest think for me, as a mother, is to have to wake her up in the morning to have her breakfast when I know she's tired from all the activity the previous day.

    Anyway, that's besides the point. I think if we start them on good habits now, they'll carry it with them their entire life...which is good not only for T1Ds but also for all of us. I wouldn't try to explain much in terms of trying to keep a schedule for meals. "That's just the way it is." I've heard different takes on what can or cannot be eaten. I've heard more people say not to withhold anything from the kids. But we also have to question ourselves if we're eating healthy or not. I think if we just focus on having healthy eating habits for everybody, then we're setting them up (and ourselves) for a life with no complications from ~d.

    The shots and testing... I think the best would be to distract him. With the testing, make it a "non-issue". Do it while he's playing or busy with something. Some friends gave our daughter a doctor set and it helped her to be the doctor and give her toys their shots. She especially would do it on Rufus, the bear with ~d. We associated the "nurse bear" with her favorite nurse in the hospital and so she got to be the good and favored nurse. Made her braver in the beginning to get her shots.

    Things will get better. He will get used to it. Two months into this and the Lantus is still a bit of an issue for us. But it's getting better.
     
  10. lisamustac

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    Our problem came with the "you must eat 45g of carbs with every meal." Yeah, right. No 2 year old I know eats that much at every meal!!! After 4-5 months, I told the endo we needed to be on the pump. He wasn't thrilled, but approved the request and by 6 months post-dx, we were pumping. I truly believe that is the best way to go with such a young child. Small doses of insulin for small appetites!

    We ran into the same problem and switched endos when we were told he was to young for the pump. My DS was dx at 21 months. Things seem like they are always going to be different but i promise you will reach a new normal. I think with the shoots and finger sticks it has to be done matter of fact. They can read your face if you are scared. Trust me every finger stick and site change still break my heart but it's what we have to do to keep our children alive. The first few months are very hard but you will receive tons of help here and things do get easier.
     
  11. sariana

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    I am sooo sorry for your diagnosis...

    Mine was still 2 when diagnosed, so I know how you feel :( As soon as you can get on a pump, I would do it to be honest. Then he can eat what he wants and when without fear of a shot.

    As for snacks, buy LOTS of low carb goodies for him. At diagnosis, we were told that she could have 15 carbs (designated for her specific ratio's) free in between meals. We went NUTS one day at a local grocery store looking at the carbs on every type of snack that she would like... we kept all kinds and dealt with it that way so that she would have fewer shots in the day.

    I hoe that this helps... I would definitely look into if he can have "free" carbs between meals and look for goodies that he may enjoy.
     
  12. joan

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    I am sorry you are all dealing with this diagnosis. My son was almost 2 when he was diagnosed with d and that was 15 years ago. I still remember the anxiety we all felt at mealtime. I would suggest as others have that when it is time for testing get everything ready without him seeing then just go up to him while he is doing whatever and try to make it as stress free as you can. The problem is that in the beginning it is hard to get the blood and you are probably anxious as well. What kind of lancing device are you using? The multiclix is a great one which most people say that it doesn't hurt.

    He may be hungry in between his meals because often before diagnosis children either lose weight or haven't gained so once on insulin are trying to catch up and require a lot of calories. I would give him some treats included with the meals so he isn't feeling so deprived. As far as low carb snacks my son loved and still loves sugar free ice pops.

    I found books about healthy meals and feeding children very helpful and adopted those practices into my families life.

    This is a very stressful time but it does get easier.
     
  13. virgo39

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    I am so sorry about your son. I agree with the prior posters about using some routine for blood checks and injections, doing what works in terms of making it as matter-of-fact and non-stressful as possible -- whether rewards, distractions, etc. My DD was older at dx, 5, but I know she picked up on my anxiety/upset/stress at first, so I had to work very hard at being very matter-of-fact about the need to do tests and injections.

    She has adapted like a champ and I think your son is likely to as well ... he will awe you with his resilience!

    Good luck.
     
  14. Jen_in_NH

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    I'm so sorry you had to join us all here.

    My son was diagnosed at 20 months, and we were told the same thing about no snacks higher than 15 carbs. We found a ton of things he liked that were low carb. Cheese sticks, carrot sticks, cucumbers, sugar free jello (make some Jello Jigglers - they still look like snacks ;))

    As far as hating the shots and finger sticks, that's a tough one. Christopher never put up a huge fuss about it, but he hated the Lantus. We just did everything very matter-of-fact, and then he got a hug when it was over. For him, that worked. Even still, he knows there isn't a debate about checking his sugar, changing his pod, etc. He's 3, so everything else is a debate.....:rolleyes:
     
  15. Lisa P.

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    1. Black olives were our salvation for carb free snacks. They are fun on the fingers, and the fat in them makes them satisfying.

    2. Speed is the key. Anticipation leads to a pattern, so when possible keep it casual and fast. There's a "dart" method of giving shots that is very helpful, sometimes with the little ones you wind up having such trouble getting the shot in that it takes a long time and that's harder. Moco provided a link.
    http://www.scribd.com/doc/9689292/How-to-Give-a-Painless-Injection

    3. We test toes and when she was little our favorite place to give injections was the fat tissue at the back of the arm. These are not the most accurate places, so check to see if it's "allowed" yet, but by checking toes the kid can keep doing an activity -- playdough, anyone? -- and gets used to it being just part of the day. By injecting the insulin into the back of the arm, I was able to just swoop in, hold her arm firmly but gently in a "C" so that the fat bunched up behind her arm, shoot and go. It is often hard giving a shot in the thigh or bum to a squirming kid. There are holds that make it work, but I'd rather get my kid used to shots and go rather than have to put him in a yoga pose every time. :rolleyes:

    4. In early days, you are going to see a lot of high numbers. A lot. It's o.k. If you're like most, your kid was running above 300 big chunks of the day, so if he hits it every once in awhile now it's still a huge improvement.

    That said, his overall bg is going to be much, much better now and so HE WILL FEEL MUCH, MUCH BETTER VERY VERY SOON. It is always less of a struggle to delay food, give shots, or test when a toddler has had better bg. A toddler over 300 is a toddler on crack, his nerves are completely shot, his brain is very foggy, he feels crummy, and there's no way you can give him a shot or delay food without getting misery. You just have to get through this. But you'll have times when he's in a good place on his bg and the shots or delays will be much, much easier.

    It gets better every day.
     
  16. Beach bum

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    Hi and welcome.

    We were able to explain it a bit easier, but not much as our daughter was diagnosed at age 4. Paula's explanation is probably the best for his age.
    As for fear of testing, let him do a bg test on his favorite stuffed animal, same for injections (we would have her do it after we took the needle off the pen, or you can take the needle out of a syringe). It made her feel like she had a little more control.

    We did a lot of veggies and deli meat in the beginning after we had exhausted our 15g free snack. She had lost so much weight that she was constantly eating. We did sf jello jigglers or jellow with whipped cream, pickles, chips and salsa. The snacks are out there, just ask around here, people have some great ideas.
     
  17. sariana

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    Oh yes... RUFUS! See if you can get a Rufus teddy bear from the clinic. That is where we gout ours. If not, check your local JDRF for the Bag of Hope (this is from my local JDRF though). We were given by the nurses a broken syringe set and saline bottle that she could give to Rufus. It became a ritual... We give her her meds and then she can help give his.

    When she later moved to a pump, we hooked Rufus up to a pump as well :) A wooden block with a picture of the same pump taped over it :)
     
  18. new d dad

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    We already have Rufus they gave it it him in the PICU. And we have started to let him help give rufus the shot & check rufus'es sugar, which seems to help a little, but he still panicks some when it comes his turn.
     
  19. StillMamamia

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    He's been diagnosed just a few days ago. Give it time.:cwds:

    We still have our moments, more than 3 years into this journey.
     
  20. StillMamamia

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    Oh, forgot to add you can use a numbing cream (ask your endo about this). It will help numb the are a bit, but you have to apply it some times before for it to work.

    There's also a gadget to help with the shots, but I can't remember the name for the life of me. Hopefully someone will chime in. It helps numb the nerves on the shot are a bit as well, I believe.
     

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