How Can You Tell If A Child Is At Risk For Type 2?
If a blood relative - such as a father, mother, or grandparent - has type 2 diabetes, a child is at greater risk than a child who doesn't have a relative with the disease. Overall, African American and Mexican American children are more insulin resistant that Caucasian children, putting them at higher risk.
Individuals who are overweight are at risk for type 2 diabetes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), you are "at risk for overweight" if you are in the 85th to 94th percentile on the CDC's Body Mass Index (BMI)-for-age growth charts (indicating that 85 out of 100 children of the same height weigh less than you). "Overweight" is defined as at or above the 95th percentile on the BMI-for-age growth charts (meaning that only 5% of children of the same height weigh less than you). The Centers for Disease Control has BMI charts to help you.
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommend that children at risk for type 2 diabetes be tested by having a fasting blood sugar level obtained when they are 10 years of age or older. They also recommend that the test be repeated every 2 years The risk factors include being overweight and having at least two of the other risk factors listed below:
- Having a relative with diabetes
- Being of African-American, Native American, Hispanic, Asian American, or Pacific Islander descent
- Showing signs of insulin resistance such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol or acanthosis nigrican, the darkening of the skin at the neck and arm pits
It's important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of diabetes, and if they develop, to talk to a doctor a get your child tested. It's critically important to catch diabetes early so the disease can be properly managed and long-term complications can be avoided.
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Last Updated: Saturday April 20, 2013 13:31:34
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