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This Thanksgiving I am Thankful for Life-changing Technology

img_2510-copyI am thrilled that the FDA has approved the Medtronic hybrid closed loop system, called an artificial pancreas. Although not yet approved in Canada, I am confident it will eventually be approved for use here. I am thankful that research is providing better treatment and hope for all people living with type 1diabetes. This system will automate the dosing of insulin to reduce high blood sugar levels and reduce the likelihood of severe low blood sugars. I tear up with joy knowing this system will improve nighttime safety.

My son Alexander is a teenager so the day when he will live independently looms closer. Thoughts of him living alone with diabetes used to strike fear into my heart. My fear was fuelled by the possibility of a severe, possibly fatal, nighttime low blood sugar. Advances like this closed loop system reassure me that Alexander will be able to safely live alone when he is ready.

Like many parents with a child with type 1, I hold my breath every morning until I hear his footsteps, or check on him to know with certainty he has survived another night. I keep my fears to myself. Part of learning to live with diabetes is not allowing your fear to limit your child’s life. In my book, Parenting Joyfully When Your Child has diabetes, I offer tips to help you manage these common fears and assess when you need external support.

The Medtronic hybrid system is not a cure, but it is a huge step forward. To learn more about the system and the research investment from JDRF that fuelled this great advance, click here.

Happy Thanksgiving. What are you thankful for?

 

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