There will be many times when a child with diabetes feels different. Help the child fit diabetes self management into his or her life. You are in a position to influence the child’s self-esteem and attitude.
Blood Glucose Monitoring (SMBG)
Most children with diabetes check their blood sugars 4 or more times per day. Common testing times are before meals and bedtime snack. While some children do not test before lunch at school, it’s more common that they do. This should be a family decision in conjunction with the diabetes team.
Usual targets for blood sugars are: 75% or more readings between 70 and 150 mg/dl. However, individual targets are often set for each child. It is important to consult with parents and possibly the child’s diabetes team to determine what appropriate targets are for that child.
Children with diabetes should participate fully in any exercise program or activity. They may need to eat an extra snack before or during exercise. Discuss appropriate snacks with parents.
Many children have midmorning and/or midafternoon snack as part of their meal plan. Snacks can be eaten in the classroom, between classes or during a break. Child, parents, and teacher need to decide the best way of managing this to keep child from feeling different.
Finishing meals and snacks is an important part of the treatment plan. Staff need to be sure child has adequate time to complete meal or snack. Special times where food will be served need to be discussed with parents.
There are a variety of insulin regimens. Many children will get insulin injections before breakfast and before dinner. However, some children may need to take insulin more frequently and still others may use an insulin pump. Children requiring insulin at school will need to be allowed to admister insulin at the appropriate time.
Unless a child’s management plan requires an insulin injection prior to lunch, insulin is generally not given at school.