Just like diabetes in adults, the cause for childhood diabetes has not been identified. Most experts attribute it to inherited genetic characteristics are further amplified by poor diet and/or lack of exercise.
Throughout the world, the diabetes related incidences are more increasingly common in both adults and children. Currently, most children are affected with Type 1 diabetes. This means the diabetic child cannot produce the important hormone called Insulin. The critical job of transporting the sugar from the blood to cells is performed by Insulin. In the absence of Insulin, the sugar builds up in the child’s bloodstream leading to life-threatening complications such as nerve damage, kidney damage and heart diseases. Although the exact causes of diabetes in children are poorly understood. It is speculated that diabetes occurs when the body’s immune system that normally fights against the infection mistakenly attacks the insulin producing cells of the pancreas. The signs and symptoms of childhood diabetes include:
- Increase thirst and frequent urination
- Extreme hunger
- Weight loss
- Blurred vision
- Yeast infection
In addition to this, genetic and environmental factors also play a role in progression. Some of the genetic factors associated to childhood diabetes are family history, genetic susceptibility and race. The environmental factors include virus infections and diet. Although there is no prevention for diabetes in children, the complications can be prevented by maintaining the blood sugar levels normal and by eating a healthy diet with regular physical activity.