Background and aim Being a chronic disease, diabetes affects children’s life styles, causes changes in their routines and makes them cope with many difficulties of the diabetes treatment. The purpose of this study was to determine the difficulties experienced by children with diabetes.
Methods The study used the method of focus group interviews and face-to-face in-depth interviews for qualitative studies. Interviews were held with the 7 children aged 12–18 with type 1 diabetes mellitus on January 2014. Data was collected using a semi-structured questionnaire prepared by the investigators through screening. The children’s and their mothers’ verbal consents were obtained.
Results Concerning the diabetes treatment, all the children stated that they did not like having their fingers pricked every day, found it difficult to get used to needles and they would be happier without needles. Regarding the question, "Are you having a difficulty with controlling your diet", 2 children answered, "I occasionally want to eat sweets but I can’t because of my disease" and 2 answered, "While my friends eat anything they want, I can’t. I like pasta a lot and I want to eat. But I know I am not allowed to". Regarding the question, "Do you restrict your physical activities due to diabetes?", almost all of them stated that they had a difficulty in physical education lessons and restricted their activities at school.
Conclusion In the study, we think that healthcare professionals should provide the convenient support and consultancy services by taking especially the diabetes treatment of children and their anxieties about living with this disease into consideration.