My 4 year old was recently diagnosed with T1D and he’s hungry alll the time. We try all the free snacks and his sugar levels still continue to go up. His insulin/correction rates have changed every day. But I’m just wondering if anyone has any tips to help my poor boy. I hate seeing him so angry cause he’s so hungry. We’re trying all we can.
Hi @Muecker13 and welcome to the forum. I’m sorry your little guy is having such a hard time with his numbers and snacking. Since he was just diagnosed and getting started on insulin it will take some time to get his numbers stable. You’re probably keeping records of what he eats, his insulin use, and other factors that affect his health - including emotions, which can be a challenge. That will help your doctor identify patterns. Does his BG rise specifically with snacks? If he’s on a pump and snacking about the same time each day, even on free foods, it may be that his basal rate needs to be changed. Another possibility is that of he’s low when he gets his snack, angry outbursts could be driving it up.
Hang in there - with your records your pediatric endo should be able to help you work things out.
@Muecker13 Hi Maurisa and welcome to the TypeOneNation Forum! Always hungry for a four old boy is not unusual, and insulin being injected/infused has the side effect of making one feel hungry. Other than a stick of celery, there really isn’t a “carbohydrate free”, so no matter what he eats MAY need insulin unless the snack is balanced by activity; and yes, a four year old is constantly active.
As Dorie @wadawabbit said, there are many, many things that affect our Body Glucose Level [BGL]; below is a link to a list of 42 factors that affects glucose.
It may be helping if is correction factors [sensitivity rates] and carb:insulin ratios are changed every day, but in my experience it might be causing more problems than it solves; the human body is dynamic and will try to “protect itself” and you may complicate matters by too frequent changes. NOTE: I AM NOT a medical doctor so my suggestions are primarily developed from my six plus decades living well with TypeOne.
@Dennis brought up something I forgot to mention: making changes daily sounds too frequent. Like Dennis, I am not a doctor either - and people who are new to diabetes - especially children too young to clearly communicate what is happening - should follow doctor’s advice. If I may gently ask, is it your doctor who is advising you are you making the changes on your own?
There are endos, and there are pediatric endos, and the latter are better at helping manage diabetes in such a young body (as well as the hormonal influences that will hit with puberty years down the road) especially given the impressive list of affecting factors Dennis provided.
You didn’t state how long this had been going on, or how high his numbers get. But if his physician is the one who has been making the frequent changes and you’re not comfortable, you could see another doctor. If course you don’t want to see your child running high, and sometimes a fresh set of eyes provides the medical perspective you need to level things out.
By the way, I’m curious as to whether he takes shots or uses a pump; and does he have a CGM?
All the changes are made from his dr. He has been officially diagnosed with T1D exactly one week ago. His levels are in the 400-high levels (so above 600). Every once in awhile we will get a 170-270 range. His drs goal is to stay around 150. I’m not uncomfortable with the frequent changes because I was told it takes awhile to figure out the perfect number for his body. Since he was just recently diagnosed his dr wants us to get familiar with poking fingers and giving shots but he will be put on a CGM in the next few weeks. As for a pump we’re unsure if they’ll do since he’s so young and active. We don’t know if it’ll get bumped or not…
to answer your question, his numbers tend to go up after snacking. Which we try to stick to the free snacks they still rise. He loves peanut butter so that has been put on quite a bit of things.
Also his endo specializes in peds.
Thanks. Apologies if I sounded as if I was lecturing. I find that people on the site try to be very helpful, and if info isn’t shared up front we (I) may be telling you stuff you already know, as is the case here.
Thank you for sharing that he was just diagnosed a week ago. Needles are not fun for anyone - least of all small children. But I started taking shots at age 3 and got used to them over time. Thankfully the needles in use be are much finer than when I started, but he may still find them painful. I don’t use anything myself but I understand some people numb the area with ice before injecting, and there are typical analgesics that can be used as well although I don’t know if they are for young children.
Back to the topic of snacking - when I was growing up with diabetes there was a “set time” for each meal and snacks, broken only if I felt funny - no BG meters at the time so I listened to my body. Some people are “grazers” - a medical term (which may or may not be in “Gray’s Anatomy” referring to people who snack throughout the day. Perhaps rather than having one large snack (relatively speaking) you could split it into smaller portions spaced apart - it might help him be less cranky.
I’m not a big peanut butter fan so I rarely eat it; so I looked it up online and found am interesting article about natural vs. “standard” PB and additives, that might help.
Welcome to the forum. I want to add that without insulin, his body will consume fat and muscle and suffer dehydration. These things together in a growing child will make him insane with hunger. That part I get. The next likely thing is learning how to use insulin yourself. This takes time. We’ve all had to do this next part.
Once you have a good handle on insulin he will likely need a higher protein and higher carb diet. A specialist with experience in nutrition in kids might be very helpful.
There aren’t perfect numbers and after treating myself for over 40 years I can testify that there is no leveling out, there is reasonable control and frequent highs and lows for which you (and ultimately your child) will have to learn how to address.
After some experience using insulin, he can eat and snack.
I hate hearing about children and T1D. Because I know how difficult it is for me as an adult. The issues are only compounded. As everyone says it takes time to find good levels. And as Dennis said the body is dynamic and is constantly changing.
The tough part for me was learning that not every thing you do is gonna be perfect for me. Meaning if I do this the result will be…
Because it never works that way for me. Due to that, I ask all kinds of questions and drive the Dr’s staff nuts because the answers I get is usually I dont know. I’m not good with that answer.
With that said, give it time and see if it comes under control. Remember what you do today usually affects tomorrow, not now! Sometimes you won’t see results for days to certain things you do. Just make sure you check with Dr before going hog wild with decisions.
I hope you will get a handle on this soon, because diabetes is difficult if you are dealing with it, never mind caring for a child with it. Sometimes they just don’t know enough to convey how they feel or feel so bad they just say anything hoping you can help.
Hope I’ve said something that helps to understand your child’s view better.