Diabetes in children is categorized as Type I diabetes and also called juvenile diabetes. Individually, the symptoms of juvenile diabetes may resemble the signs of other common childhood diseases, but taken together, they lead to the diagnosis of diabetes.
Top 7 Childhood Diabetes Symptoms
Increased thirst is one of the most common and among the first symptoms of childhood diabetes. A child with diabetes has high amount of sugar in the blood because insulin cannot break down sugars effectively and mobilize it into the cells. Since sugars dehydrate the body, a child with diabetes is always thirsty. This condition is called polydipsia.
Frequent urination is a symptom which is related to increased thirst. Drinking too much of water leads to an increase in urination frequency. If you notice your child urinating more than normal, you should look for some other symptoms which can be more suggestive of juvenile diabetes. Medially, the condition is called polyuria. Polydipsia and polyuria are interrelated symptoms and manifest simultaneously.
In a child suffering from diabetes, the process of sugar metabolism that provides energy to the body is affected and therefore, the sugars are not broken down into energy efficiently. When the cells in the body do not receive adequate energy, the body assumes that it is being starved of food. The brain sends signals to the stomach, which rumbles in hunger. This happens even if the child has eaten just a short while back.
You should look out for abnormal weight loss which is yet another sign of juvenile diabetes. The human body stores some amount of fats for those times when the body is severely deprived of food and energy. In type I diabetes, although the child does eat nutritious food, energy does not reach the cells of the body.
So, the stored fats are used up and the fat reserves fall drastically. As a result, the child loses weight. In some cases, children who are excessively obese are diagnosed with the disease. Usually, diabetes is caused due to obesity. Such children might end up putting on weight further.
Children with diabetes usually suffer lower vision. Since sugar level in the body is very high, the lens in the eyes is dehydrated. This leads to blurred vision. The child finds it difficult to focus on objects. If left untreated and if blood sugar levels are not maintained, the child might even become blind.
Constant fatigue is a major giveaway of childhood diabetes. This happens because the child has very low energy levels. So, if your child is tired all the time despite eating sufficient quantities of nutritious food, you should consult a doctor.
Besides these symptoms, a child with diabetes suffers mood swings and irritability. There might be changes in behavioral pattern. Yeast infections are commonly observed, especially in the genital regions for girls. Keep a lookout for severe diaper rashes because yeast infection can cause rashes.
Studies have shown that there is a marked increase in the number of Type I diabetes cases amongst children in the world. Given the fact that diabetes can cause serious complications such as kidney and liver problems, it is important to consult a doctor immediately if you notice any of the above symptoms in your child.