Sadly, studies conducted over the past 10 years have shown a significant increase in the occurrence of diabetes in patients under the age of 20. The TUNG Brush and Gel team is committed to providing our readers with the latest news about health and wellness issues, and it is important to us that future generations of “tongue cleaners” 😊 are healthy! This is a serious issue and awareness is important for both kids and their parents.

According to a report Incidence Trends of Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes among Youths, 2002-2012, recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine, there is an alarming increase in both types of diabetes in children under 20 in the United States. To understand this, it is first important to know the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes:

  1. Type 1: This has always been the prevalent type of diabetes found in children, and occurs when the body fails to make insulin. Without insulin, cells cannot absorb sugar (glucose), which they need to produce energy. Also known as early onset diabetes, Type 1 has been thought of as a hereditary problem and therefore, while not necessarily preventable, is more easily diagnosed due to fluctuations in sugar that cause physical reactions, sending the patient to the doctor.
  2. Type 2: This is not as easily diagnosed, as the body does not tend to react to sugar fluctuations. Cause by the insufficient use of insulin in the body, Type 2 has, traditionally, been an adult-onset disease caused, in part, by lifestyle and general health. The frightening part of the recent studies is that Type 2 is on the rise in children – since it does not tend to be an inherited problem, the consensus is that in many cases it can be prevented or delayed.

So, why are we telling you all of this? Because you can help your kids delay  or prevent the development of this dreadful and debilitating disease. The single biggest factor in the development of Type 2 diabetes is weight! The more overweight they are (or you are, for that matter) the higher the risk of the disease. And sadly, the rise in childhood obesity in this country is growing at an alarming rate.

Diabetics are at greater risk for various other diseases as well, including gum disease and severe oral hygiene issues. That is why tongue cleaning is so important in a diabetic’s daily routine.

So please, help your kids! Take charge! We can’t change their heredity, but proper diet, good exercise regime and the maintenance of a healthy lifestyle are the key to reducing their risk of Type 2 diabetes – and that IS in their, and your, control!