Increase in diabetes in children

Significant increase in type 1 diabetes in children

According to the Working Group for Pediatric Diabetology (AGPD) and the German Diabetes Society, more and more children will develop type 1 diabetes in the coming years. By 2020, the number of affected children under the age of 15 will probably double to around 30,000, explained Dr. Andreas Neu, spokesman for the AG for Pediatric Diabetology at the annual meeting of DDG and AGPD in Erlangen.

According to the experts, various causes favor the increased occurrence of type 1 diabetes in children. Here genetic factors are also mentioned environmental influences, weaning too early and caesarean section deliveries. Worldwide, an increase in type 1 diabetes by two to three percent per year can be observed, in Europe the experts even recorded an increase of 3.4 percent, said the AGPD spokesman. According to Dr. There are currently around 25,000 children and adolescents under the age of 20 with type 1 diabetes. In addition, there is also a significant increase in type 2 diabetes (adult diabetes) in adolescents, which is due to the increasingly unhealthy diet, lack of exercise and the corresponding excess weight.

Restrictions in the everyday life of children due to type 1 diabetes Typically, diabetes in adolescents in the early stages is characterized by frequent urination, great thirst, weight loss and reduced performance, the AGPD explains in the brochure “Children with diabetes in the School". The symptoms are triggered by insulin deficiency or high blood sugar. Those affected are dependent on insulin treatment all their lives. If adults often have considerable difficulties dealing with diabetes, it is all the more difficult for children. You have to think about the insulin injection before every meal and keep an eye on the carbohydrate or sugar content during meals. It should also be borne in mind that during physical activities the blood sugar level drops faster and there is a risk of hypoglycaemia.

Diabetes also an increasing problem for adolescents Although type 1 diabetes is overall significantly less common than type 2 diabetes, it is the far more common form of diabetes in adolescents. While only around 5,000 children under the age of 15 suffer from type 2 diabetes, the number of type 1 diabetes at this age is around three times as high. The Working Group for Pediatric Diabetology at the University Clinic in Tübingen has stated that it has "made it its task to promote the improvement of care for children and adolescents with diabetes" and for this purpose imparts "knowledge about diabetes mellitus and its treatment as well as all related issues medical educational, social and psychological problems. ”At this year's joint annual meeting of the DDG and the AGPD, around 500 researchers, doctors, psychologists, medical assistants and other interested parties met and discussed, among other things, future developments and treatment methods for diabetes. (fp)

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