6 ways to ensure a safe and successful school year for type 1 diabetes kids
Useful tips for parents and caregivers to prepare for the back-to-school season
If your child has been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, the back-to-school season is a great time to put a plan in place for the year ahead. If you’re wondering, how can I help my child with type 1 diabetes prepare for a healthy and fun school year, here are six tips:
1. Have a conversation with your child about their fears. First things first: with a new school year approaching, set aside some time to talk with your child about their concerns regarding diabetes. Validate any fears they might have, answer their questions, and help them feel safe by expressing your support.
2. Talk to your doctor and create a diabetes management plan. If you haven’t already, it’s a good idea to create a diabetes medical management plan together with your care team—or update the previous year’s plan. Share it with anyone involved in your child’s care. If your child has a doctor’s appointment coming up, check out the list of questions we compiled to help you feel prepared.
3. Prepare your type 1 diabetes kids’ kit There’s a lot to think about when it comes to putting together a diabetes management kit. Start with the basics—medical ID tag, blood sugar meters and extra batteries, test strips, insulin pens, antiseptic wipes—and don’t forget to add glucose tablets or juice. Be sure to check the kit and replenish supplies as the school year goes on. You can also put together a diabetes care box for school to have on hand.
Ask your child’s doctor if you should include a glucagon autoinjector like two-step Gvoke HypoPen® (glucagon injection) in the kit as well, which can help you feel prepared in the event that your child has very low blood sugar. It is not known if Gvoke® is safe and effective for children under 2 years of age.
4. Establish open lines of communication with everyone involved in your child’s care.Reach out to your school administrators, nurses, teachers, coaches and anyone else involved in your child’s day-to-day activities. Make sure they understand their responsibilities for creating a safe environment for your child—and continue to keep an open line of communication with them throughout the year.
You can also encourage your child’s teachers to be open about what diabetes is and how it’s managed, if your child is comfortable with that. Promoting positive dialogue can help alleviate feelings of isolation from your child.
5. Get ahead of any lunchtime or snack-time challenges. Your school’s cafeteria can provide you with upcoming menus, which will help you ensure your child eats a healthy, balanced lunch. Work with your child’s doctor or school nurse to come up with a plan for in-school treats and other unplanned eating occasions.
6. Plan for sports, physical education and other activities. In most cases, with your doctor’s guidance, your child can participate in physical activities and sports throughout the school year. Just make sure everyone involved knows that you’ll need to monitor your child’s blood sugar before, during and after any activity.
As the parent of a child with diabetes, you’ve got a lot on your shoulders. The good news? Before you know it, your child will be asking to take on more responsibilities relating to their care. Be sure to include them as you plan for the upcoming school year to help them see how being prepared makes all the difference.
Meet Gvoke HypoPen
Gvoke HypoPen is the ready-to-use rescue pen anyone can administer with confidence1
- In a study with simulated emergency conditions, 99% of people used it correctly1
- Simple to administer at a moment’s notice, like an epinephrine autoinjector for severe allergic reactions
- You can even self-administer it in certain situations2
- Can be administered to the outer upper arm, lower abdomen or outer thigh3
- Brings very low blood sugar back up quickly and safely3†
†In two clinical studies in adults, blood sugar levels that were less than 50 mg/dL increased to above 70 mg/dL or increased by at least 20 mg/dL within 13.8 minutes on average.
- Valentine V, Newswanger B, Prestrelski S, Andre AD, Garibaldi M. Human factors usability and validation studies of a glucagon autoinjector in a simulated severe hypoglycemia rescue situation. Diabetes Technol Ther. 2019;21(9):522-530.
- Gvoke HypoPen [instructions for use]. Chicago, IL: Xeris Pharmaceuticals, Inc; 2023.
- Gvoke [prescribing information]. Chicago, IL: Xeris Pharmaceuticals, Inc; 2023.
INDICATION AND SAFETY SUMMARY
GVOKE is a prescription medicine used to treat very low blood sugar (severe hypoglycemia) in adults and kids with diabetes ages 2 years and above. It is not known if GVOKE is safe and effective in children under 2 years of age.
Do not use GVOKE if:
- you have a tumor in the gland on top of your kidneys (adrenal gland), called a pheochromocytoma.
- you have a tumor in your pancreas called an insulinoma.
- you are allergic to glucagon or any other inactive ingredient in GVOKE.
GVOKE MAY CAUSE SERIOUS SIDE EFFECTS, INCLUDING:
High blood pressure
GVOKE can cause high blood pressure in certain people with tumors in their adrenal glands.
Low blood sugar
GVOKE can cause low blood sugar in certain people with tumors in their pancreas called insulinomas by making too much insulin in their bodies.
Serious allergic reaction
Call your doctor or get medical help right away if you have a serious allergic reaction including:
- difficulty breathing
- low blood pressure
COMMON SIDE EFFECTS
The most common side effects of GVOKE in adults include:
- swelling at the injection site
The most common side effects of GVOKE in children include:
- low blood sugar
- high blood sugar
- abdominal pain
- pain or redness at the injection site
These are not all the possible side effects of GVOKE. For more information, ask your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You are encouraged to report side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
Before using GVOKE, tell your doctor about all your medical conditions, including if you:
- have adrenal gland problems
- have a tumor in your pancreas
- have not had food or water for a long time (prolonged fasting or starvation)
- have low blood sugar that does not go away (chronic hypoglycemia)
- are pregnant or plan to become pregnant
- are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed
Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
HOW TO USE
- Read the detailed Instructions for Use that come with GVOKE.
- Use GVOKE exactly how your healthcare provider tells you to use it
- Make sure your relatives, close friends, and caregivers know where you store GVOKE and how to use it the right way before you need their help.
- Act quickly. Having very low blood sugar for a period of time may be harmful.
- Your healthcare provider will tell you how and when to use GVOKE.
- After giving GVOKE, your caregiver should call for emergency medical help right away.
- If you do not respond after 15 minutes, your caregiver may give you another dose, if available. Tell your healthcare provider each time you use GVOKE. Low blood sugar may happen again after receiving an injection of GVOKE. Your diabetes medicine may need to be changed.
HOW TO STORE
- Keep GVOKE in the foil pouch until you are ready to use it.
- Store GVOKE at temperatures between 68°F and 77°F.
- Do not keep it in the refrigerator or let it freeze.
Keep GVOKE and all medicines out of the reach of children.
For more information, call 1-877-937-4737 or go to www.GvokeGlucagon.com.
Please see the Full Prescribing Information for Gvoke