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Improving self-care in young people with diabetes - the importance of self-efficacy

Young people are given responsibility in different ways and at different rates across cultures and families. However, families from different backgrounds face similar challenges in supporting the self-care of a young person with diabetes. Learning to consistently carry out daily diabetes self-care tasks involves the help and support of relevant people across the lifespan: parents, siblings, friends, extended family, spouses/partners, and ultimately, children.

Coping with diabetes and self-management: a teenage perspective

Diagnosed when he was 12 years old, Adam Elliot has had type 1 diabetes for nearly three years. He is currently a student at All Saints Catholic High School in Kanata, Ontario, Canada. In this article, he shares his experiences of type 1 diabetes and explains how self-management has made his life with the condition not just bearable but as he sees it ‘a real journey that I believe is providing me  with a lot of useful life lessons’.

School as a resource for nutritional education and physical activity

Environmental  factors,  such  as  lifestyle  and  dietary choices, play a key role in determining a child’s body weight. Omnipresent and relentless advertising for low-quality convenience foods together with an over-reliance during leisure hours on television, computers and video games are driving an alarming increase in the incidence of obesity-related non-communicable diseases like type 2 diabetes among young people worldwide.

The extraordinary challenges faced by young people with diabetes in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Diabetes in young people is a heavy burden all over the world but it is particularly severe in developing countries. Although the condition is the same, the context can be very different. Young people with diabetes in the Democratic Republic of Congo have to face a number of major challenges. They are perceived as having a ‘mysterious disease’ which requires a lot of attention on a daily basis throughout a lifetime. Belief in spells is quite common in Africa, and many families feel it is their responsibility to find the person responsible for causing the diabetes.

Meeting very special needs

President's editorial

Bringing youth diabetes to light

Guest Editor's editorial

The DAWN Youth initiative - setting priorities for action

DAWN Youth is a worldwide initiative dedicated to improving the level and conditions of psychosocial support for children, adolescents and young adults with diabetes and their families worldwide. For young people affected by the condition, having to learn to accept diabetes as a part of daily living is a far greater trauma than is realized by many – even health professionals. For their families, it is a complex burden: daily diabetes management is largely in the hands of the family and the young person.

How is diabetes perceived? The results of the DAWN Youth survey

In 2001, the Diabetes Attitudes, Wishes and Needs (DAWN) study interviewed more than 5400 adults with diabetes and more than 3800 diabetes care professionals in 13 countries. The main purpose of  that research was to identify new ways to overcome the psychosocial barriers to the optimal health and quality of life of people with diabetes and those at risk.

The DAWN verdict on diabetes support in schools: could do better

Because their condition affects every aspect of their daily  life, children and adolescents with diabetes are faced with more problems than are many of their peers without diabetes. The greater part of their day is spent at school, and this is where many of the greatest problems lie. Dealing with diabetes in school is one of the most important topics in the daily life of many families. The 2007 online WebTalk survey, conducted in eight countries as part of the DAWN Youth survey, has contributed to an increased understanding of the issues faced by children and adolescents with diabetes.

DAWN Youth in Europe - international principles, national actions

While diabetes healthcare professionals quite rightly offer a combination of treatment, information and instructions, the time has come for another dimension to be added to diabetes care practices: attention to psychological and social challenges facing people with the condition and their families. DAWN Youth initiatives are being implemented in many countries worldwide in order to improve various aspects of psychosocial support, and draw attention to some fundamental shortcomings in current healthcare systems.

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