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May 4, 2010

Behavior, Mental Health

Question from Quebec, Canada:

My 11-year-old son was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in February 2009. His adjustment to diabetes was very fast and went very well; we are extremely proud of him. The only thing that worries me is that, in the past few months, my son has become very anxious. He started crying at school during class. He has been extremely worried about not succeeding in school even though he has an average of 94%. After a lot of reassurance from his parents and teacher, these episodes are less. Now, my son often comes to see me after he has gone to bed, worried what’s going to happen to him when he gets older. Sometimes he worries what he will do when he’s on his own, how will be pay for the supplies, who will look after him, etc. I try my best to reassure him that he will be okay, but he cannot seem to get past this. My son has a insulin pump and is very responsible; he is able to count his carbohydrates and is able to work the pump better then me. I’m very worried about him and it breaks my heart to see him worry over these things at such a young age.


From: DTeam Staff

Your son�s diagnosis of diabetes was over one year ago, and he adapted very well to the daily demands. Therefore, it is likely that even though the content of his worries are around his health, he is actually worried about other things as well, and that diabetes is really not the primary issue. Either way, he is suffering right now and it�s important to help him feel better. I’d strongly encourage you to talk with your pediatrician and find a psychologist who has expertise in cognitive behavior therapy for children with anxiety. The research in this field is excellent and suggests that children with worries and anxieties who participate in outpatient cognitive behavior therapy do very well.