Going back to school, college or university after you've been diagnosed with diabetes is never going to be a complete breeze.
Your mates will probably wonder what's going on. Your teachers or lecturers may not know what to do. Your parents are also likely to be worried about how you'll cope.
You can help yourself and everybody else by being sensible, honest and open about your diabetes – you might be surprised how interested people are in helping if they can. Here's the lowdown on how to approach it.
This section hopes to guide you through everything you need to know about diabetes in school.
If you, your parents, or teachers need any further information check out our diabetes in schools section.
The Type 1 diabetes: Make the grade campaign is campaigning to make sure all children and young people with Type 1 diabetes get the support and care they deserve at school so that they have the same opportunities at school as other children. Head to the Type 1 diabetes: Make the grade webpage to find out more, and get involved.
My names Abi, I was diagnosed with type 1 Diabetes at 2 years old and I am 14 now, meaning I have been diagnosed for an average of 12 years. I'd love to say that it doesn't effect my everyday life like other people, but in actual fact I hate people finding out, and asking me about it... When my levels go low, i'm not entirely sure how I should tell the teacher and it makes me nervous as i'm embarrassed about it.
I'm in year 10 and because i'm not a particularly loud student none of my teachers realise i'm diabetic and I don't want them to go ' oh really I never knew you were diabetic' because it just makes me feel awkward. However although I have this constant battle of hypos and insecurity the transition from school to college was absolutely fine and it was nothing to worry about. – Abi
Hey my names Megan, I have been diabetic since i was six years old so for 9 years now, and yes, i have my ups and downs with it, but everyone is so supportive and always have advice to help you, i don't think diabetes should ever get in the way of your life, and what you want to do. i am on four injections a day, and i would say it is much better, because you aren't so restricted with what you can eat, and what you can do.
i would say moving to secondary school was probably the time i have been most nervous about it because there is all these new people, but everyone just accepts you for who you are, and begins to understand what it all means, i had another boy in my year who also has diabetes and it's great to talk to him about our blood levels and our average blood level, i hope one day they find a cure to diabeties, and i am sure they will :) – Megan
Thank you Samantha. Just to point out for everyone, losing weight through missing injections does sadly lead to nasty complications and should be avoided at all costs. – My Life
I am now in my second year at Uni and similarly to Stefan [see below] I too found the change quite complicated. I went through periods of time were my glucose levels apeared to always be up the wall. I hated eating meals, especially lunch to begin with.
I do not smoke but the whole weight loss aspect applied to me. You may want to keep an eye on ketones though as I stopped eating lunch whilst at Uni and as a result my glucose levels went up and I began to get high ketones. This made me lose weight! Drastically!
It does get better though, I promise. In your second and third year, once you are more settled so will your glucose levels and so do you. Get into a routine which works for you and see how you get on... It is so important as a young person, especially at uni to do what suits you best!
Hope this helps? – Samantha
heey im kirsty and im in the 2nd year in secondry school. ive just gone on to insulin pump and at first i didnt like it but now i think its apart of me and its a lot easier. my friend has diabeties so thats a big help. she had a hypo in lesson and the teacher told her off for scaring the other kids but she just told them back haha good luck guyss dont wrurry it will be fine give it timee xxx – Kirsty
hiya xx i am amy and i am in year 8. i used to get all the teachers having a go at me because they didnt know i had diabeties. i used to have to have snacks at break time and they told me to put them away. they were realy horrid! but now i am in high school i am finding controling my diabeties sooooo much easier because evryone understands. i have a bessi mate who is realy understanding too. i think evryone desrerves a bessi mate, with or without diabeties! i hope you agree! – Amy C
i've just started univ and am finding things really tough. i try to eat properly but sometimes its hard to be motivated. i've started smoking and don't always eat properly. i'm not putting on weight and if anything i am losing weight. is there anyone out there in a similar situation? – Stefan
Hi, I am Lesley-Ann and I am 11 years old. I am going up to 1st year after the summer holidays. I have had diabetes for a year now and I'm the same... I dont find it any easier! I really want to go on to an insulin pump too because then you wouldnt have to do a injection at school. At the moment I am on four injections! – Lesley-Ann
I've had Type 1 diabetes since May last year and it still doesn't seem to get any easier. I started High School last year and what is really annoying is that when I take my lunch time injection everyone wants to watch. Does anyone else have that problem?
But what I can't wait to do is go on the insulin pump so I won't have to inject at school. – Aimee