Saturday, February 23, 2013

It's 230am here!

Boaz's sugar was 68 when we checked it at 230. So here we are feeding a sleepy baby icing and trying to get him to drink some milk. He is currently half playing, half drinking his milk.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Signs of Type 1 Diabetes

    It is very important to know the signs of  Type 1 Diabetes.  We didn't, so we were not looking for them.  Now let me go ahead and tell you the signs and then we will talk about Boaz's signs and why these signs occur.
  • Excessive thirst or hunger 
  • Weight loss
  • Having to use bathroom a lot more, or suddenly wetting through diapers
  • Constant, unexplained crankiness 
  • Fatigue 
  • Frequent infections of the skin
More serious signs: 
  • Vomiting 
  • Labored Breathing 
  • Fruity Smell to breath
  • Lethargy 
     Now, I don't want you to worry every time your child wets through their diaper (I sure do!) or is really thirsty, but I do want you to be aware of the signs so that it will not go unnoticed.  With Boaz, I would have never guessed he had T1D.  
    There were only three signs that I caught (even though I didn't connect them with diabetes) before diagnosis:
  1. When he was a baby, he was the squirmiest you would ever meet.  He started Occupational Therapy when he was only 1 month old so his OT knew this well.  In the few months prior to diagnosis, we knew something wasn't quite right, yet we didn't think anything was wrong.  At therapy, he just wasn't his bubbly, squirmy self, but we didn't think too much of it.  
  2.  Boaz was wetting through his diapers on a regular basis but as soon as we switched to Pampers, he no longer did so I just assumed that was a baby thing.
  3. One day, I picked Boaz up and I could feel his spine, which I had never noticed before.  I suspected weight loss at that point (though I still was not thinking diabetes) and made note to mention it to the doctor when we went that week.  Before we even made it to the doctor that week we were told that they suspected diabetes was in his future.
    Now that I look back on it, I can spot other signs that we missed, which just makes me so thankful that God had His hand on Boaz! 
    Ok, now for the reasons diabetes causes these things:
  • Excessive thirst or hunger:  T1D can cause thirstiness when a child's blood sugar is high as a way to flush ketones out of its system. It may cause hunger if the child is low and needs to bring their sugar up.
  • Weight loss:  The body needs insulin to convert sugar to energy.  When it does not have the insulin to do so it turns to fat resulting in weight loss and ketones
  • Using the bathroom a lot more is also a result of the body flushing out ketones
  • Crankiness and fatigue:  When you sugar is high or low, you do not feel like yourself and thus may be cranky or tired
  • Diabetes often slows down the healing process with wounds, so you may get infections easily if left untreated
  • The more serious signs may be symptoms of ketosis, which could be very dangerous.  If your child has these symptoms, seek medical attention.   
*****This post is not meant to take the place of your doctor or to be used for diagnosis.  It is only to be used as a resource.  If you are concerned or suspect diabetes, talk to your doctor.*****

Friday, February 15, 2013

Our Type 1 Diabetes Diagnosis Story

    A lot of diagnosis stories are similar.  The parents are not looking for signs of diabetes, so they usually go unnoticed until the child is lethargic and almost in ketosis.  Those stories are always scary and I am usually glad that it is not ours.  Boaz was diagnosed on October 6th, 2012.  We had gone to the endocrinologist about a month before and just had some routine blood work done.  Because Boaz has Down syndrome we see a lot of specialist just because.  I was shocked when the endo called and told us that Boaz was showing early signs of diabetes.  So, the same day we received those results, we headed to Savannah to get some more blood work done.  We were given a Blood Glucose meter and told to check his sugar 1 hour after bed once a week.  The first night that we did this was the night before the Buddy Walk and it was high.  I really wanted to go to the Buddy Walk, since it was our first one with Boaz and the thought of spending the day in the hospital was upsetting.  Our endo told us to check his fasting sugar in the morning and if it was over 150 that we would need to come in to see him.  We checked it the next morning and it was not over 150 so we were able to participate in all the Buddy Walk activities.  After Josh and I ate lunch (Boaz was sleeping), he woke up and we checked his sugar again.  This time it was over 250, so we headed to the hospital where he was eventually diagnosed.  So, like I said, our story is not quite the scary ketosis story.

 Well, that's what I thought anyways.  I was remembering yesterday the time that Boaz had croup.  The doctor called us to the office on a Sunday and gave Boaz a steroid shot so that we could go to Savannah the next day and see my cousins.  While we were in Savannah, Boaz threw up and was extremely lethargic.  We took him to the hospital and were eventually released with a nebulizer and sent home.  I realized yesterday that I think that's our ketosis story!  This was a few months before diagnosis and we were definitely not looking for diabetes. It is only by the grace of God that Boaz's body was producing enough insulin to bring him out of that on its own!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

Hope you are enjoying your Valentine's day! At our house there are lots of hugs, kisses, cupcakes, story time, and cute flags!

Yay For Less Shots

This boy's body has been doing so well managing its sugar on its own that today was the first day in a few that he has needed a short-acting insulin shot!

God is Our Strength Forever

"My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."  ~Psalm 73:26

    This verse has touched me this week in remembering that God is my strength and my portion.  Even though diabetes is a very stressful disease, God gives me the strength and everything I need to get through it.  Last week I read a book about a mother's journey with Down syndrome, and she talked about how her friends each gave her a piece of themselves to help her get through.  I realized that that is exactly what God does for those who love and follow Him!  What a glorious thing!  May we never forget it!      


Monday, February 11, 2013

Boaz's Check-up

    Boaz had a check-up appointment earlier this week.  I posted while we were in the office promising to post a couple of videos.  Sadly, I cannot get them to upload.  Sorry about that.  Anyways, Boaz's appointment went well.   Boaz was weighed and measured, and for the first time, maybe ever, they successfully took his blood pressure.  During the process they also prick his finger and test his A1C.  A1C measures how his blood sugar has been over a period of time, I think around 90 days.  His A1C was 7.6 which is good for his age. 
    He has been having a lot of lows lately, so we discussed adjusting his insulin but decided to continue with what we are doing currently.  Lately, he has not been receiving any short acting insulin to cover meals.  He is still getting long acting insulin in the mornings but other than that his body is almost doing what it is supposed to and is keeping his sugar pretty steady.  It is possible that he is honeymooning (a period of time where his body is producing insulin, but I will explain that further this week).  It is very difficult not being able to even guess what his body is going to do, and even when you think you have it figured out, it throws a curve ball and you have to start over.  Our new normal is constantly changing.  For now though, I am happy that we are not having to give him as many shots!  So anyways, we enjoyed our day around town and the doctor is satisfied with how we are managing his sugar!


Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Future Hope

We sang this hymn in church this past Sunday and I was reminded that Boaz will not have to struggle with diabetes for eternity. In heaven there is no sickness, how wonderful!
On Jordan's Stormy Banks I Stand 
1. On Jordan’s stormy banks I stand,
And cast a wishful eye
To Canaan’s fair and happy land,
Where my possessions lie.

2. All o’er those wide extended plains,
Shines one eternal day;
There God the Son forever reigns,
And scatters night away.

Chorus: I am bound (I am bound) 
I am bound (I am bound)
I am bound for promised land,
I am bound (I am bound) 
I am bound (I am bound)
I am bound for promised land.

3. No chilling winds nor poisonous breath
Can reach that healthful shore;
Sickness, sorrow, pain and death,
Are felt and feared no more.
(Repeat chorus)

4. When shall I reach that happy place,
And be forever blessed?
When shall I see my Father’s face,
And in His bosom rest?
(Repeat chorus)

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

In the Endo Office

Boaz has a check up with the endocrinologist today and we are sitting in the office dancing, eating Cheerios, playing and Vining (check out the app Vine!) I'll post some videos later!

Friday, February 1, 2013

Diabetes Education: Sick Day

    Last week Boaz's sugar was all over the place.  He was having at least one low a day, which is very unusual for him, and no matter what we did, we just couldn't seem to manage it.  I took him to the doctor this week because he was throwing up at nighttime and we had ruled out every possibility as to why.  Much to my surprise, he was diagnosed with strep! He had no other symptoms that I could see.  He was wheezing, so we had to give him a breathing treatment every four hours for two days and nights (ok, so we didn't wake up to give him his 1am treatment. Whoops!).  He is on antibiotics now and getting better, but of course now Emory and I are sick!

     Anyways, sick days for diabetics are quite complicated.  We are supposed to check his ketones every diaper, and its seems that we are checking his sugar a hundred times a day!  Also, if he throws up or has large ketones we could very possibly spend a while in the hospital while Boaz is hooked up to fluids and monitored closely to make sure his sugar doesn't drop.  As I mentioned before, his sugar is all over the place.  He will be below 100 before a meal and so I will wait to give him his insulin (which, has often been a good choice, because it has kept him in range).  Yet, other times, his sugar is high, but, we are hanging in there, closely monitoring his sugar and washing lots of hands!