Type 2 diabetes becoming more common in children
DECCAN CHRONICLE | Tushar Kaushik
Contrary to popular belief, diabetes affects a significant number of children for reasons other than genetics. The prevalence of the disease is higher in urban areas such as Hyderabad. On World Diabetes Day, November 14, doctors emphasised the risk of the rise of the condition in children and the role that parents and schools must play in their care.
Diabetes is classified into two types: Type 1 DM (diabetes mellitus), which is a genetic condition that affects people at a younger age, and Type 2 DM, which is caused by lifestyle and usually affects people in their 40s or 50s. Type 1 diabetes affects children, but Type 2 diabetes in children has increased dramatically over the last two decades.
Dr Varsha Kataria, Senior Paediatrician.
According to senior paediatrician Dr Varsha Kataria, the total prevalence of Type 1 DM in the country is 2.5 lakh across all age groups, with one lakh being children under the age of 14 years, and around 15,900 new cases being reported in the same age group each year.
"In India, one out of every ten children is predisposed to diabetes. One of the main causes of the sudden increase in Type 2 DM is childhood obesity," Dr Kataria explained. She stated that parents should provide their children with a balanced diet, ensure daily physical activity, limit their screen time, stop them from eating in between meals, and limit their consumption of junk foods, chocolate, aerated drinks, packed juices, and so on.
Dr Bipin Sethi, Endocrinologist.
According to endocrinologist Dr Bipin Sethi, the affected children may experience a variety of symptoms, including excessive urination, nocturnal enuresis, thirst, appetite, weight loss, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.
Children with Type 1 diabetes require extensive monitoring and medication to achieve stable glucose levels, and because they will need to do this at school as well, schools play an important role, according to doctors.
"Diabetic children require help and support from school management," said paediatric endocrinologist Dr Leenatha Reddy. However, schools are at a significant disadvantage due to a lack of awareness and information."
A nation at risk
2.5 lakh: Total prevalence of Type 1 DM among Indians
1 lakh: Prevalence in children below 14 years
15,900: No. of new cases reported every year in children below 14 years
The estimated number of youth aged 10 to 19 years with Type 2 diabetes increased from 34 per lakh in 2001 to 67 in 2017.
Estimated no. of youth aged 10-19 years with Type 2 DM increased from 34 every 1 lakh in 2001 to 67 in 2017.
By 2020, the prevalence in the younger population had risen above 10%.