Help Teens with Diabetes stay on track with smart phone apps and interactive games. I have to admit I have been one of those parents that say “can you put that phone down for 5 minutes while you eat!”
But now good news is that smart technology now offers kids fun and engaging new ways to help manage their diabetes through their favorite electronic media.
If you have teens then you would know how difficult it is to get them motivated to look after their own diabetes can be one of the hardest problems facing parents and carers.
Research tells us that when they have a positive attitude to their well being this translates into lower HbA1c levels and better long-term health.
Let’s look what is out for young people and how it all works:
Game for a Test?
“Injecting some fun into finger-prick test by linking a Nintendo game to a blood glucose monitor is the gem of an idea developed by the father of a child with type 1 diabetes. The beauty of the Didget blood glucose monitoring system is that it gives kids a fun competitive incentive to test their blood glucose.”
“What happens once they have tested and the results are downloaded to the Didget, it can unlock a new levels to the game and even take kids to a special level, Diabetes World, where they can interact with other kids with diabetes.”
Available: Didget, from Bayer
Tap into Apps:
“Almost every teen has one, and smart phones are now shaping up as the new best friend of youngsters managing type 1 diabetes. The recent explosion in the number of diabetes-savy apps- or applications has put a wealth of health support at their fast-moving fingertips.
While apps are not allowed to give medical advice, tapping into them is an easy way for young people to learn about their condition and motivate them to develop sound habits, such as tracking their BGLs in relation to their carb intake and activity levels.”
While some of the apps are free some are only 99 cents. Here are a few you might like to make a note of:
• Glucose Buddy – free
• Diabetes Log – free
• Glucose Charter – 99 cents
• Diabetes Companion – 99 cents
• On track Diabetes – Android free
• Diabetes Forum for Diabetics – Android free
• Glucool Diabetes Log – Android $4.99
“Facebook is connecting kids with diabetes with The America Diabetes Foundation has nearly 90,000 member and JDRF International comes a close second with 65,000. JDRF Australia has worked hard to link up people around the world who all share an interest in research and news.
Ground breaking new digital features are coming thick and fast with wireless technology now primed to take the effort out of recording BGL results.
A Canadian hospital has launched a pilot app for teens with type 1 – The ‘Bant’ named after Frederick Banting who discovered insulin. It collects and transfers blood glucose monitor results wirelessly via a Bluetooth adaptor. This app will also reward teems with iTunes vouchers for taking regular readings.”
Just a note: While a free non-wireless version of Bant is available at the Apple App Store, the meter linked to the advanced version is not yet available in Australia.
Full story: Diabetic Living – December
I believe anything that helps kids keep motivated with their diabetes and keeps them focused on monitoring their blood sugars is a great breakthrough and I really think it has hit the nail on the head with finding a way that interests kids as majority of teens especially are already embracing new technology on their iPhones.