Type 1 kids and vaccinations

I’m wondering if anyone has advice on childhood vaccinations for type 1 children.
Are there any precautions needed? It’s hard to find anything on this topic, on whether type 1 diabetic kids would react in a different way to vaccinations? Anyone have any feedback on this, or where to find out more.

Hi @mogirl, in my opinion, your pediatrician is the best person to have this discussion with.

I’ve had all my vaccinations, including rounds of double and triple boosters for when I have had to travel to underdeveloped countries and have had zero reactions (except for pain at the injection site) and no change in blood sugar control.

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Hey @mogirl! Great question.
It’s EXTRA important for kids with T1D to be vaccinated, because when we get sick, it makes our blood sugar skyrocket and it can be very dangerous. I haven’t had any strong adverse reactions to vaccinations–sometimes when I get the flu shot I find that my blood sugar runs a bit higher for a day or so, but other than that, it’s never affected me at all. Like @joe said, talk to your pediatrician if you have any lingering concerns.

Thanks and I appreciate the responses. Yes, I’m sure it’s fine and pediatrician will say it will be fine. I don’t think our pediatrician is especially trained in the care and management of a type one kid so it’s always good to hear feedback from others who have this condition (or kids with Type 1) if there are adverse reactions not typical in a child who does not have Type One.


  1. your assessment of your primary pediatrician’s T1D knowledge is probably fair, since they’re generalists, but don’t write them out of the picture, they’re still on your side and will know your kiddo better overall than the endocrinologist.

  2. Our son has had all of the recommended vaccinations, plus regular allergy shots for the past three years. His sugars also run higher during the day of his shots.

The elevated glucose levels are due to the increased activity of the immune system, and stress hormones like cortisol, which decrease the body’s response to insulin. Still, this temporary rise in glucose levels is just that…temporary. The benefits of vaccinations will last their whole lifetime.

What bookwormnerd13 said. We don’t fight off infection easily and have so much more to worry about when we get sick, so it’s extra important to get vaccinated when appropriate. I’ve gotten a flu shot annually for the last 20 years, plus everything from meningitis (for a school) to typhoid fever (for travel) to rabies (for work). If there were weird side effects, I didn’t notice them.

Hi @mogirl, before my daughter was diagnosed we were actually planning to Not vaccinate. Once she got diagnosed at age 4 we decided to vaccinate because of the T1D although we still waited a couple of years and have spaced them out. We had a pediatrician office that was very open to alternative health and the head doc did lots of research (which is rare) so all the vaccinations were preservative-free. We’ve moved since then (daughter is 13 now). The only vaccination that stands out was she did get a fever from the first MMR shot and got the full body rash two weeks after and we struggled with high blood sugar during that time as with any fever. No reactions to the others. It is very difficult to get a non-biased point of view from most docs, nor do most docs feel any motivation to truly research the vaccination issue so I understand you trying to gather info. We were lucky to have the pediatrician office we had. If I were going to ask a medical person what there experience is with T1D kids and vaccinations it would be a nurse practitioner at the Diabetes clinic if you have one where you live.

Thank you so much for your response. My main concern is with how the vaccines might react in her body now that she has T1D, and yes it’s difficult to find a doctor who knows enough about both to really give good advice. I do like the idea of spreading the vaccines out so her body has more time to adjust and recover each time. Good advice on talking to the nurse practitioner, as she is the one who probably hears most from parents if there are any issues. Thanks again.

Hi @mogirl!
I’m new to this site, but T1 for 42 years. I recently learned that the MMR vaccine is not recommended for those with autoimmune disease, or who have close family members with autoimmune disease. Therefore, we skip the MMR. I have 3 sons, none of them have been diagnosed with T1. I have other ethical issues with vaccines, in general, so my boys are only partially vaxxed. I definitely suggest doing more research.
Best Wishes,

Thank you so much Andrea. Do you remember where you read or heard of that information regarding the MMR, this is exactly the kind of information I’m trying to find, what vaccines if any are not advised for kids with autoimmune diseases.

Thanks again!

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It’s on the CDC website. Here’s the link: https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd/should-not-vacc.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fvaccines%2Fvpd-vac%2Fshould-not-vacc.htm

and a screenshot:

The contradiction is specifically for immune compromised such as HIV and cancer. T1D is not immune compromised.


Have 3 family members plus myself that are T1 (spanning 8 years old to 46 years old). All of us have been vaccinated with no issues.

Are there risks to taking vaccines…yes. Are there risks to your child’s personal safety and everyone around them if you choose not to vaccinate…yes. I would suggest reaching out to the CDC or an Infectious Disease doctor with your concerns. The internet is a dangerous and deceptive place to try and understand this topic. We as human beings have proven rather poor in understanding quantified risk and making emotional choices that effect us and the lives around us…especially when misinformation is so readily available.

As an example…the statistics show you are more likely to drown drinking a cup of coffee tomorrow morning than to experience a complication from the MMR vaccine. I drink pretty well from a cup, so I will take those odds and protect me, my kids and those around us.

I applaud you for doing your research as all good parents should. Do your research with the experts using data. Odds are they are not hear or on the internet. Just my two cents.

Thanks for your response Charles. I’m finally back on here! I agree the internet is not the place to get verifiable information for such important topics. My reason for posting this issue here was to get feedback from other parents of kids with Type 1 to learn from their experiences. It can be a lonely road to travel without other parents to talk to about these things. The sharing helps.

I’m certain that the vaccination shot looks a lot less scary to a T1 kid than a non diabetic kid!

Even as an adult, the doctor or nurse always starts giving me a pep talk before they draw blood or give me a shot. I’m like, “yeah, yeah, I’ve injected myself 20,000 times in my life, just stick it in me already!” :smile: