I am newly diagnosed

Being told you have type 1 diabetes can make you feel very confused, sad, angry and maybe a bit scared.

Your family is probably feeling a bit strange too but that’s because they are worried about you.

People all over the world have type 1 diabetes and some of them might have even found out on the same day you were told. Try and take it slowly and believe us when we say  you will soon be very, very good at handling your type 1 diabetes. One day you may even be able to help other kids like you, who are feeling a bit scared.

Why me?

You’re probably wondering why you had to get type 1 diabetes in the first place? What had you done to deserve it? Did you do anything wrong?

It’s quite normal to feel like getting type 1 diabetes isn’t fair, so don’t feel bad if you do feel that way.

But “why me?” is quite a hard question to answer and even though scientists are working hard to try and find out what causes type 1, even they’re still not sure.

What they do know is that your genes probably played a part. A certain combination of genes could make you more likely to develop type 1 diabetes than someone else, even someone in your own family.

Another thing that scientists are looking into is what part your environment, or the world around you, plays. They think that there are certain things in the environment that can trigger type 1, but again are still not definite on what these might be.

It’s not your fault – nothing you or your parents did or didn’t do led to your type 1 and it’s not linked to the food you eat, your weight or the exercise you do.

What’s it like to have type 1 diabetes?

You’ve probably heard lots already about how it is going to affect you. There’s no denying the fact that type 1 can be pretty rubbish and life is going to be very different for you from now on. It’s up to you though how much you let type 1 run your life. You can either sit back and let it get you down, or you can take control and look after yourself so that you have a fun life! Hopefully there is some useful information here to help you do that.

Can I still go to school and hang out with my friends?

Don’t worry there is no reason why you can’t still go to school as normal or play sport with your friends. You will need to teach the adults at your school about type 1 because they will need to know what to do in an emergency. We can help with that because we have lots of information on this site. Your friends are going to be important in helping you manage your type 1 too because sometimes when you’re feeling down, you will want to turn to them for a chat. You can still hang out with them like usual but there might be times when you have to listen to your body and take a rest. Good friends will understand that though.

What will happen to me when I’m older?

Turning into an adult is a difficult time for everyone and unfortunately, you may have more challenges than someone without type 1. You will have to spend a lot of time and energy monitoring your blood sugars and taking care of your health. In some ways though that can be a good thing, because you will know better than most people how to look after your body and will have better self-discipline.

Some athletes and other people who have gone on to achieve great things in spite of their type 1 diabetes, have said they used this self awareness to their advantage.

You can still have an active and fulfilling life in spite of your type 1, especially if you do your best to look after yourself. In fact, type 1 might even spur you on to make your life better!

Is type 1 diabetes going to be cured one day?

Yes and JDRF is doing tons of research to make sure that we find the cure!

The whole reason why JDRF exists is so that one day you won’t have to deal with type 1 anymore. Until then though, we are working on new developments to help you manage your type 1 even better.

 

Useful information

If you are new to type 1 diabetes, you probably been given lots of information. This may take some time to look through and understand. Take your time. We have lots of useful information below in the following sections to help explain more about type 1 diabetes, how to manage and treat the condition. This might be useful for your parents or carer too so ask them to have a look or why not take a look through it together.

Treating insulin

Understanding type 1
In this section you will learn more about the condition so that you've got all the knowledge you need to manage your condition as best you can

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Blood glucose levels

Managing type 1
Managing your condition well is essential to make sure you live a healthy life with type 1 diabetes. This section will provide you with more information on how you know can manage type 1. However if have any problems or concerns then please do speak to your diabetes healthcare team.

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Using an insulin pump to treat type 1 diabetes

Treating
Treating type 1 diabetes means replacing the insulin that your pancreas doesn't make and monitoring your blood sugar levels. There are different ways to do this, this section will give you more information.

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Type 1 and food

Type 1 diabetes and food
It is really important that you keep an eye on the food you eat because it can have such an impact on your blood sugar levels.

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Type 1 and sports

Exercise and sports
Having type 1 diabetes does not mean that you will have to give up on all the sports that you love doing.

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Boy unwell

Sickness and feeling unwell
You might need to manage your type 1 diabetes a bit differently when you're sick.

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Large group of students in class

School and university
Life at school and university can be a little more difficult when you have type 1 diabetes, with its own challenges.

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Travelling and holiday
Maybe your holiday involves spending a long time in the car with an annoying sibling or perhaps you and your parents have to pack everything for a holiday abroad. We have our top 10 travel tips to help you on your way.

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Living with type 1

Check ups
What type 1 checks you should be having? On this page we explain the check ups you should be receiving and how often it’s recommended to get them done.

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Doctor

Your healthcare team
Your healthcare team are there to help you through every aspect of treating and managing your type 1 diabetes.

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Girl at doctors appointment

Transitioning to adult care
When transitioning to adult care, different clinics in the UK have different policies. Some start the process when you are 14 years old, and others when you are 16 or 17.

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