Youngsters Learn At Diabetes Camp - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Youngsters Learn At Diabetes Camp

Living with diabetes can be hard and sometimes isolating, especially when you are a child. That's the reason behind the diabetes camp, being held all week at Camp Tyler. At the camp there is fun, friendship, and of course learning about the serious disease.

"It was really hard when I was young. I used to scream when I had to get shots and stuff,"said 9 year-old Alissa Vandergriff. She was diagnosed with diabetes when she was only two, and it's something that runs in her family.

"I have a cousin she is 16 who has had it since she was 5. I have a great great great grandma with it," said Alissa, "I have to check my blood every morning to make sure its not running high or low because I'm usually always high at night."

Alissa checks her blood six times a day. She adjusts her insulin for every carb she eats. Diabetes camp is for kids like Alissa, living with the disease. But also for kids that are pre-exposed to diabetes.

Terren Morre's whole family has diabetes. He's learning habits that will change the way he lives.

"I'll watch out for what I eat. Sweet things, things that make you big that might cause diabetes," said Terren. 

"So to learn lifestyle changes to incorporate healthy choices so that it stays with them the rest of their lives," said Camp Director and Program Manager Anjani Upponi.

Alissa said the camp has enabled her to be an example to kids still learning how to deal with their diabetes.

"Since I had it for 7 years I can let them know what will happen if you don't take care of your diabetes," said Alissa, "I know that there is a lot more people that have diabetes and lm not left out. That has helped me a lot."

The week long diabetes day camp is held every year at Camp Tyler. If you would like to sign your child up for next year contact East Texas Medical Center for information on enrollment.

Danielle Capper, Reporting.


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