Diabetes is one of the most common – and increasingly prevalent – chronic diseases in children. For parents, the challenge is recognizing the symptoms in their child.
Since the onset is slow and the changes are subtle, diabetes often isn’t recognized until a child is very ill, usually in conjunction with another illness.
So how do parents know if their child has diabetes? Keep an eye out for these five common signs:
• An increase in thirst or urination.
• Increased appetite with sudden or unexplained weight loss.
• Vision changes.
• A fruity odor to the breath.
A doctor should be consulted for any of those symptoms, because the symptoms may have other causes besides diabetes. If the doctor suspects diabetes, a diagnosis can be made by looking at the results of one fasting blood sugar test or two random blood sugar tests.
After a child has been diagnosed, many parents realize in retrospect that the symptoms of diabetes had been present for quite some time.