Type 2 Diabetes
A Type 2 diabetes diagnosis might leave you wondering about your child’s future. And how you’re going to cope with all of the lifestyle changes needed to help them thrive and grow. When you have the right medical team on your side, these changes can be easier. Together with their care team, you can help your child successfully manage their blood sugar and feel their best.
At Cleveland Clinic Children's, we treat children with Type 2 diabetes every day. We understand the challenges you and your child face. And we offer personalized treatment that’s focused on your child’s unique needs and preferences. With our care and support, your child can learn healthy habits that set them up for a lifetime of success.
Why Choose Cleveland Clinic Children's for Type 2 Diabetes Care?
Coping with a chronic (lifelong) condition can be emotionally challenging. Your child’s team includes experts who specialize in caring for children with Type 2 diabetes. Our social workers, counselors and psychologists are ready to help when your child needs extra support. Meet our team.
We make sure your child’s treatment is designed for them. We’ll ask them what foods they like and what they like to do. And we’ll check their overall health. We’ll also walk you and your child through each step of their care plan so you can feel empowered — not overwhelmed.
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Regular medical visits will be part of your child’s ongoing Type 2 diabetes treatment — but traveling for them doesn’t have to be. We offer virtual visits when it makes sense, so you can fit healthcare appointments into your busy life.
Type 2 Diabetes Diagnosis at Cleveland Clinic Children's
Type 2 diabetes most often occurs in adults. But children can also get it. Having Type 2 diabetes means that their pancreas doesn’t make enough insulin — and what it does make doesn’t work as it should to turn blood sugar (glucose) into energy.
Many children get a prediabetes diagnosis before they’re diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Prediabetes means your child’s blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not high enough to be considered diabetes. Children with prediabetes have a high risk of being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes is usually diagnosed in the teen years, but it can affect younger kids, too. Your child might be really tired, have blurry vision, pee (urinate) more often (especially at night) and feel very hungry or thirsty. They may also lose weight. Blood tests, including blood glucose and glycated hemoglobin (A1C), help your provider diagnose or rule out the condition.
Successful Type 2 diabetes care requires expertise from different specialists.
When your child comes to Cleveland Clinic Children's for diagnosis and treatment, their team could include board-certified pediatric endocrinologists, certified diabetes educators and registered dietitians, as well as other skilled healthcare providers, depending on their needs.
Our providers may see your child after they’ve been diagnosed to confirm the diagnosis. Or they might make a diagnosis at their first visit. Either way, they’ll gather more information about your child’s health by talking with you and your child about their symptoms, your family’s health history and giving your child a physical exam. Your child might also have more blood or urine tests, if needed.
Providers Who Treat Type 2 Diabetes
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Type 2 Diabetes Treatment at Cleveland Clinic Children's
Your child’s providers will go over all test results with you and work together to design a personalized treatment plan for your child. This plan can have many parts and will include some lifestyle changes and education about how to manage this condition.
In-person and virtual appointments
Your child will see their care team for regular checkups. We’ll work with your child to track their treatment progress, celebrate their successes and change their plan when needed. While some appointments will need to be in-person, others can be done virtually using a smartphone, tablet or computer.
Personalized diabetes education
Our certified diabetes educators will help your child learn how to stay healthy by making changes to their diet and activities. We’ll also work with you to help you learn how to support your child in managing their Type 2 diabetes.
We know education needs to be fun for kids, so we’ll keep your child’s personality and learning style in mind to make it a positive experience. Our educators are here to help your child learn small — but powerful — ways to choose healthy foods and fun physical activities to improve their blood sugar levels and stay healthy.
Blood sugar monitoring
It’s important to keep a close eye on your child’s blood sugar. Your providers might recommend using a blood glucose meter to check sugar levels or something called continuous glucose monitoring (CGM). They might also have your child do regular A1C tests to check glucose levels.
Sometimes your child might need medication to help control their diabetes. If so, our endocrinologists will work closely with you and your child to provide the most effective option. Medications can include either pills or injections (shots) of insulin or medicine that’s not insulin. These medications can also help your child feel less hungry, which can make it easier for them to keep a healthy body weight.
Weight management is an important goal of type 2 diabetes treatment. A healthy diet, fun physical activity and medicines or bariatric surgery, are all treatment options. We’ll check medications at each visit to make sure they’re still working as they should.
Even between appointments, you won’t be on your own. You and your child will have a dedicated care coordinator who can answer your questions or talk to you about your concerns anytime. We can also connect you to community resources and support groups.
Mental health resources
Our compassionate team keeps an eye on your child’s emotional and social needs throughout their treatment. And we can connect you and your child to trained mental health professionals, if needed.
Seamless transition to adult care
Type 2 diabetes can be a lifelong challenge. So when it’s time, we’ll make it easy for your child to transition to adult diabetes care by gradually helping them get to know their adult providers, so they feel comfortable with the switch.
Take the Next Step
Type 2 diabetes doesn’t have to hold your child back from doing the things they love. But we also know that making diet and exercise changes aren’t always easy, especially for kids. That’s why our team is here to guide and support you and your child from diagnosis and beyond. With the right care and diabetes management, your child can enjoy life to the fullest.
Getting an appointment with Cleveland Clinic Children's Type 2 diabetes experts is easy. We’re here to help you get the care you need.
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