To integrate and manage diabetes in school: Youth’s experiences of living with Type 1 diabetes in relation to school – a qualitative study
Keywords:Type 1 diabetes, Experiences, Qualitative content analysis, School, Self-management, Youth
In Sweden, each year approximately 700 children develop Type 1 diabetes. Living with the illness is a challenge for youth and requires adjustments to lifestyle, and to manage school. The aim was to describe youths’ experiences of living with Type 1 diabetes in relation to school. A qualitative research design was used and interviews were performed with eight girls and five boys with Type 1 diabetes. The interviews were subjected to qualitative content analysis. Three themes were identified: to be friends with the diabetes, striving for normality and receiving support from others. Results showed a need to increase the understanding of T1D and diabetic competence within the Swedish school system and knowledge of youths’ own experiences is vital in this work. Living with T1D was a struggle for normality, independency and the youth needed to be friends with diabetes to handle everyday self-management. Although there are demanding life and school circumstances, it eventually becomes possible for the youth to handle the illness and to integrate and manage diabetes in school.
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