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Letter to Coach

Date: ___________

Dear Coach,

This letter is on behalf of _____________________ who is participating in ________________ this year. A person with diabetes should not be and does not want to be treated differently because of having diabetes. However, there are things that you need to be aware of to help _____________ perform well and enjoy the sport.

Exercise is very important for children and teens with diabetes. Exercise helps to lower blood sugar. We hope ______________ will take the right amount of insulin and eat according to the planned activity for the day. However, even when these things are done, there may be times when he/she may have an "insulin reaction". This reaction, caused by low blood sugar needs immediate attention. The symptoms of an insulin reaction include: shakiness, dizziness, sweating, rapid onset of extreme hunger or tiredness, and paleness. ________________ may also have double vision or headaches. You may also notice _________________'s performance suddenly become very poor, or his/her overall mood may change to being very crabby or emotional.

Low blood sugar is treated with a can of fruit juice, 8 oz of Gatorade, or 2 teaspoons of sugar followed in 5 to 10 minutes by solid food (fruit, cheese and crackers, or a sandwich). He/She should rest for at least 10 minutes to let the blood sugar return to normal. However, some children will still have a headache and may not feel like continuing. We suggest that families be prepared for insulin reactions by having the proper foods available.

Many people with diabetes will change their insulin dose on days they have practice or a game. Scheduling or cancelling these events ahead of time helps the person (and parents) to be prepared.

Again, it is very important for youth with diabetes to be involved in sports. It helps with their sugar control and allows their insulin to work more effectively. Please call if you need more information or have any concerns. Our phone number is ____________________.


Abstracted from the book, "Understanding Diabetes," 10th Edition, by H. Peter Chase, MD (available by calling 1-800-695-2873).
Published by McKesson Provider Technologies.
Last modified: 2006-10-24
Last reviewed: 2005-12-05
This content is reviewed periodically and is subject to change as new health information becomes available. The information is intended to inform and educate and is not a replacement for medical evaluation, advice, diagnosis or treatment by a healthcare professional.
Copyright 2006 McKesson Corporation and/or one of its subsidiaries. All Rights Reserved.
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