Different diseases – type 1 or 2 diabetes
Last week the Matamata Chron-icle reported that the three children pictured and others mentioned in the article on page two had type 2 diabetes.
We apologise for this incorrect information as they suffer from type 1 diabetes. We regret the confusion and any misunderstanding this may have caused.
There are about 2500 people aged 0-18 living with type 1 diabetes in New Zealand and more than 200 with type 2 diabetes.
New Zealand has one of the highest rates of pediatric diabetes in the world and numbers are estimated to be growing at 10 per cent annually. The cause is not yet understood.
Type 1 diabetes cannot prevented or cured.
It is an auto-immune disease in which the body’s immune system destroys its own insulinproducing cells.
The condition has been documented for centuries and can occur in babies as young as six weeks old and in adults in their 20s or even later, although it is most commonly diagnosed
be among school-age children.
Insulin injections must be given at least twice to four times daily and the dose calculated each time, based on blood sugar levels, appetite and expected level of exercise.
Ironically, the insulin injections that keep these young people alive can also be fatal if the wrong dose is given so blood tests must be undertaken up to six or more times a day to manage the condition and maintain health.
Managing type 1 diabetes requires constant attention to balancing a good diet and exercise with the injections replacing the insulin the body is unable to produce.
The management routine stressful and relentless.
An insulin pump would be beneficial to any child who has type 1 diabetes because it reduces injections to once every three days which can improve their quality of life.
So with the right support, young people with diabetes grow up learning to take remarkable responsibility for their health and well being but they need the support of their families, schools and wider community around them.
Type 2 diabetes has a different genetic basis from type 1 and its onset can be accelerated by lifestyle factors.
Once diagnosed, the condition must also be managed carefully and a healthy lifestyle adopted to avoid later complications.
Type 2 is managed mainly by diet and exercise.
The Matamata Chronicle wants to acknowledge Diabetes Youth Matamata co-ordinator Rochelle Richardson for the time and effort she has put into working with children with type 1 diabetes over the past four years.
Without her help and support many of these children would not have the chance to have an insulin pump or be in a small community with people who understand what they endure.