Children -- especially teens -- may have a tough time making changes to prevent or manage type 2 diabetes. Here are some ways you can help:
Talk with your child honestly about health and weight. Be supportive. Encourage her to speak up about her concerns.
Don't separate your child for special treatment. Your entire family can benefit from making changes in diet and activity.
Make changes slowly. Just as it took time for diabetes to develop, it will take time to achieve better health.
Do more activities your child enjoys. Lower the amount of time your family spends watching TV or playing video games.
If your child refuses to follow her plan, try to find out why. Teens, for example, are dealing with hormone changes, demands on their time, peer pressure, and other things that seem more important to them than their health.
Set small, easy-to-reach goals. Plan special rewards for your child when she meets each goal. Then move on to the next.
Talk to a diabetes educator, doctor, dietitian, or other diabetes professional for more ideas on how to help your child become healthier.
By working together, you, your child, and her diabetes health care team can be sure she remains healthy for years to come.