Diabetes affects 100 children every year

Published Wednesday, 25 April 2012
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Parents are being urged to be aware of the early signs of diabetes, which affects a further 100 children every year in Northern Ireland.

Early detection of the disease means young people are less likely to develop potentially life-threatening complications or be admitted to hospital.

Ewan McNeill was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes after his mum Catherine noticed some worrying symptoms over six weeks.

"He was very thirsty and was drinking water all the time and then running out to go to the toilet a lot.

"Teachers said this had become disruptive and Ewan also lost around three stone during that time," she said.

Ewan, who is 13-years-old, has now learned to control what he was eating and how much insulin he needed.

"I have to check blood sugars a minimum of four times a day and take an injection a minimum of three times a day. It could be more depending on what type of snacks I'm taking," he explained.

The Public Health Agency says bed wetting, excessive tiredness and blurred vision could also be indicative of diabetes.

"I wish we had been a bit more aware and it hadn't come to the stage where he had to stay in hospital for a wee while," his mum added.

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Iain Foster, who is National Director of Diabetes UK Northern Ireland, added: "A simple blood test by a GP can diagnose a child and prevent hospitalisation so the message is be aware of the symptoms and act quickly."
© UTV News
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2 Comments
Jill in Banbridge wrote (724 days ago):
As a parent of a child who has diabetes I would like to further add that the great majority of children are affected by Type 1 Diabetes and experts are not sure of the cause. Children of any age, weight, diet and lifestyle can be affected. We didn't think it would happen to our own normally healthy energetic son and it was a massive shock. Please be aware of the signs and symptoms.
Ewan McNeill in Banbridge Northern Ireland wrote (728 days ago):
It's me Ewan McNeill here. I just want to say please do remember all of the symptoms for type 1 diabetes metioned to prvent your child or pupil getting very sick and causing damage to their body. Thanks
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