University of Illinois Extension

Transitioning to Adulthood

The skills that kids and teens learn when young should help diabetes management become more stable as an adult.

General Characteristics Impact of Diabetes How to Approach
Are idealistic
  • May be more interested in the healthcare system
  • Discuss participation in diabetes research
  • Offer opportunities to participate in support groups, camps, and ADA activities
May be preparing for college life
  • May be living in a dorm and eating cafeteria food
  • Experience added stress of new classes and friends
  • May have difficulty adjusting
  • Find a support group on campus
  • Meet with health center nurses and dietitians
  • Make sure to wear alert bracelet or key ring

Are thinking about job opportunities

  • Diabetes may affect career options
  • Attend vocational counseling
Learning financial and emotional independence
  • Face issues about health insurance, obtaining medical supplies
  • Provide education
  • Meet with diabetes coach
Have increased self-reliance
  • May need to find own diabetes team at school or if moving to a different city
  • Attending doctor’s visits alone
  • Provide education about standards of care

Schreiner et al. Diabetes Spectrum 13 (2): 83,2000