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Parental Involvement in Type 1 Diabetes Management across Adolescence.

Parental involvement is crucial for effective adolescent diabetes management. We view parental involvement as an ongoing transaction between the adolescent and parent as they simultaneously attempt to manage the illness and associated distress, meet the adolescent’s autonomy needs, and cultivate independent diabetes management skills. We have examined these complex transactions across short (days) and long (years) periods of time. Our research is showing that collaborations between parents and adolescents are beneficial across the adolescent years. In contrast, although intrusive or controlling aspects of parental involvement may normalize blood glucose levels in the short-term, this style of interaction may undermine the adolescent’s self-efficacy and diabetes management over time. We also have found that parents continue to be crucial for T1D management for young adults, especially among young adults who do not yet have strong self-regulation skills.