Diabetes in the Digital Age
Increasingly, families are turning to new methods, fueled by the advances in and easy availability of technology, for managing type 1 diabetes. Parents are using technology to build person-to-person communities as Dr. Wendy Sue Swanson, pediatrician and chief of digital innovation at Seattle Children’s, explains. “The T1D community was one of the first to take to social media, looking for physiological information, psychological, social and emotional support and peer-to-peer nurturing. Because it’s a minute-by-minute disease, the community has been very motivated, working to share tips and tricks and life hacks. You can imagine what a relief it can be to have a place to go online and get a script from another parent about how to talk to a school nurse or a principal with a challenge, or how to easily learn how the ADA protects students with T1D.” Dr. Craig Taplin, an endocrinologist at Seattle Children’s, said that he understands the motivation of people who have turned to new technology but doesn’t recommend that parents of a child with diabetes build their own hybrid closed loop system. But by demanding better solutions, he says, parents of children with T1D are helping to drive the diabetes technology sector.
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