Diabetes Forecast

2 Signs of Diabetes Burnout in Kids

By Allison Tsai , ,


Diabetes burnout can crop up for different reasons, and it can be tricky to identify at first. Here are a couple ways it might show up in kids and teens.

1. Peer Pressure

Kids are determined to fit in with their peers and don’t want to think of themselves as different or unable to engage in the kind of activities their friends do, says Barry Jacobs, PsyD, director of behavioral sciences at the Crozer-Keystone Family Medicine Residency Program in Springfield, Pennsylvania. As a result, they may lack motivation for self-care, skipping insulin doses or getting lax with food on a school trip.  You may notice your child has higher-than-normal glucose readings or seems less diligent about diabetes management.

2. The Long Haul

Teens and adults who have had diabetes from a young age often feel fed up at some point, says Alicia McAuliffe-Fogarty, PhD, CPsychol, vice president of Boston-based T1D Exchange. “There is nothing intrinsically motivating to manage your diabetes,” says McAuliffe-Fogarty, who lives with type 1 diabetes. The goal of avoiding future heart, eye, kidney, and nerve damage is hard to relate to the daily demands and challenges of management. “You often can feel like a failure at something that you don’t want in the first place,” she says. If you notice changes in self-care habits, or your child seems listless or withdrawn, it could be a sign of burnout.

Learn techniques for motivating a loved one who has diabetes burnout.

What’s the difference between burnout and depression? Find out here.



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