Type 1 Diabetes is a potentially life-threatening disease especially if left undiagnosed. The disease, often less heard of than Type 2, can also be misdiagnosed especially in children. When we think of Diabetes most of us think Type 2 which is impacted by diet and exercise. Type 1 Diabetes is an autoimmune disease that if undiagnosed can be deadly. A new bill could give kids and parents a life saving education.
School districts would be required, under SB 138, to work with schools to help them inform parents and students about the disease. Schools can decide whether that will be a website, a handout, a poster.
“We just want to make sure that parents and teachers, school administrators understand what the risk factors are, what the warning signs are so when a student, a child presents with certain symptoms we know to get them screened and get them treated,” said Senator Richard Roth who introduced the bill.
He says materials schools provide will include the risk factors and warning signs for Type 1 Diabetes, what the screening methods are that they should be looking for and asking their physician to apply and asking their physician how misdiagnosis’ occur and treatment options.
Debbie George’s son nearly died because she didn’t know the symptoms. Debbie’s son was drinking a lot of water, urinating a lot and lethargic. Several doctor’s visits later and a cold diagnosis at one visit and an ear infection diagnosis at another,the very next day he collapsed and later he was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.
“I don’t want any parent to go through that what I went through and I will never forget the nurse who took him in told me ‘it’s a good thing you got him in now because he may not have survived the night,” Debbie recounted.
“My son ended up in the ICU for four days. He had collapsed veins from dehydration. A blood sugar of 538. It was a really horrific experience,” added Debbie.
By the year 2050 the number of youth diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes will quadruple.
Both Senator Roth and Debbie say knowing the symptoms will save lives.