Symptoms of diabetes in babies

Recognising the symptoms of diabetes in babies may be slightly challenging due to the fact that most babies cannot tell you what symptoms they are experiencing. However, there are three definite signs you may want to watch out for in your baby and if symptomatic, take your baby to see the paediatrician.


Symptoms of diabetes in babies include excessive drinking (polydipsia), excessive urination (polyuria), and weight loss while eating normally. The slow healing of sores may be present, along with itchy and dry skin. Blurry eyesight in your baby may not be immediately obvious, however, your baby may display symptoms of fatigue and hunger. In some babies suspected of having diabetes, a dark, velvety rash may be present on the neck. Tingling in the feet may also be a symptom.

Time Frame

Simple blood and urine tests will determine your baby's diabetes diagnosis. These tests are fairly fast and you should get results between a few minutes and a few days. Your paediatrician may then treat your baby for his disease.


Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes differ in that Type 1 is usually diagnosed in babies and children. With this type of diabetes the beta cells of the pancreas do not make insulin because the body's immune system has turned against and destroyed them. Daily insulin injections will be part of the treatment. Type 2 diabetes affects mostly adults although it can strike in early childhood. Type 2 diabetes, is an insulin resistance that affects the fat, muscle and liver in the form of being unable to process insulin effectively. Over a period of time, the pancreas is no longer able to keep up with the body's insulin release needs when meals are eaten.


Victims diagnosed with diabetes may benefit from more exercise, watching sugar and calorie intake, daily checking of blood sugar levels, taking medicines on schedule, daily aspirin dosage, blood pressure checks and cholesterol control.


Type 1 diabetes may develop very quickly in your baby or small child. Watch for changes in thirst, urine output and soggy diapers and unexplained weight loss. All these symptoms should be checked out by your child's paediatrician who, on diagnosis, will provide you with information on how best to manage your baby's disease.