How Do Doctors Treat Type 2 Diabetes?

The most important treatment for Type 2 diabetes are lifestyle changes. This can include learning how to make healthier eating choices, eating the appropriate number of calories and exercising more.

Other treatments can include:

  • Metformin, a medication taken with food to help manage blood sugar levels
  • Insulin, either through an injection or an infusion pump that gives insulin through a small needle under the skin. Children with Type 2 diabetes usually need both short-acting and long-acting insulin. Some people can come off insulin after a while and some cannot.
  • Frequent blood sugar checks during the day. This is done by putting a drop of blood into a blood glucose meter or through a continuous glucose monitoring device (CGM). A CGM device is a monitor that automatically checks blood sugars through the day without having to prick your child’s finger multiple times.
  • Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) agonists. These are medications, mostly injected, which help the pancreas put out more insulin after eating. The only GLP-1 analog currently approved in children is called liraglutide.

What are other medical conditions that can happen with Type 2 diabetes?

Children with type 2 diabetes may have other disorders. There are many doctors, nurses, and other providers who can help care for your child. Other medical conditions can include:

  • Kidney disease
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Liver disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) in girls
  • Other conditions

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