Parents Key Managing Diabetes in Teens

SALT LAKE CITY, April 9 (UPI) — U.S. researchers say teens with type 1 diabetes do best when parents accept them and help them monitor treatment.

Researchers at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City found adolescents with diabetes risked serious complications when parents became lax about monitoring treatment or if the mother-child relationship was poor.

“The findings suggest that if we could improve the quality of the parent-adolescent relationship and increase parents’ monitoring of adolescents’ diabetes management, we could improve adolescents’ adherence to the type 1 diabetes regimen and, subsequently, their long-term health,” study first author, Pamela King, a postdoctoral researcher in psychology, says in a statement.

King notes adolescence is generally challenging but those with diabetes have to cope with these challenges while managing a demanding chronic illness.

King and colleagues analyzed the behavior of 252 adolescents with type 1 diabetes from the University of Utah’s Utah Diabetes Center and from Mountain Vista Medicine in South Jordan, Utah. Analysis of interviews over a two-year period indicated three markers of parental involvement: monitoring of diabetes management, being generally accepting of the child and helping with diabetic treatment.

The study findings were presented in Seattle at the Society of Behavioral Medicine’s annual meeting.

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