Is Your Diabetic Child Falling Behind in School? It May Be Due to Lack of Sleep
Recent research has revealed another critical component in effectively treating childhood diabetes: the role that sleep plays in a child’s blood sugar levels and overall health.
Researchers found that children with type 1 diabetes have greater difficulty getting a good night’s sleep compared to those without diabetes. This lack of quality sleep, in turn, makes it difficult for children to control their blood sugars. And this lack of control adversely affects a child’s performance in school, creating what is, in essence, a vicious cycle.
The fact that children – diabetic or otherwise – are failing to get a good night’s sleep isn’t news, of course. Highly active children, who shuttle from sports practice to school to karate lessons often have trouble getting to sleep at a reasonable hour. Similarly, those who spend a two or more hours in front of a television or computer find themselves over-stimulated at night and unable to sleep.
All of which further underscores the importance of a good night’s sleep for diabetic children. Parents should regulate their activities after dinner and allow for “down time” without over-stimulating the brain, monitor the child’s level of fatigue during the school day, and stay in close contact with their doctor.