With one more academic year beginning Sunday, doctors at Hamad Medical Corporation have urged school authorities to take proper care of diabetic students and shared tips in order to ensure their welfare in schools.
“Diabetic students should be careful enough and their parents, teachers and school nurses should pay special attention towards them,” Dr Wajeeha Abuhelaiqa, senior consultant, diabetes and endocrine, at Hamad Hospital, told Gulf Times.
“Students with diabetes should fully participate in physical activities as that would help lower blood glucose levels and keep them fit,” she said while sharing tips.
“Adjustments should be made to insulin intake, medication and food as per the need and physical condition of the patient. A quick-acting source of sugar, sugar-meter, and water should always be available with a diabetic student.
"Teachers and parents should be familiar with symptoms of both high and low blood sugar and measures to deal with it. Blood sugar level before, during, and after physical activity should be checked,” she said adding that diabetic students should take quick-acting source of sugar or juice or snack if blood sugar level starts to fall.
The physician noted that the number of diabetic children and adolescents is going up and said HMC is actively intervening to ensure the betterment of students’ health in the country.
HMC is regularly holding training programmes for teachers, parents and school nurses in order to educate them on how to deal with emergencies and help educational institutions properly take care of diabetic students.
When it comes to nutrition management, the schools should ensure that students are having breakfast and should provide them with meals and snacks that help them achieve the adequate level of calories and consistent quantity of carbohydrates.
The schools, according to the doctor, should ensure that healthy foods such as whole grains, low-fat protein and dairy, fruits, and vegetables are available for students.
While explaining the duties and responsibilities of school nurses she said they should check the blood sugar levels of diabetic students and insulin and glucagon administration should be done when it’s needed. “The nurses should be familiar with the symptoms and treatment of high and low blood sugar,” she said.
The physician also explained diabetic students’ rights and said all such students should be ensured opportunity to fully participate in all school activities and should be allowed to eat when they need to. “They should be given necessary care if they feel fatigued, made to undergo blood sugar checking and be given insulin when required,” she said.