With summer quickly approaching and warm weather upon us, we might all be getting the itch to take some time off and explore someplace new and exciting. Perhaps a long weekend trip to northern Michigan, or a visit to a bustling and bright city is on the horizon for you. For those individuals living with diabetes, however, it may feel difficult and restricting to take a long and relaxing break from their everyday routine. I am here to supply you with all of the necessary tools and tricks to manage your diabetes with as little stress as possible when visiting all those exciting summer vacation destinations. Following these few tips can help you worry less and manage better while away from home, exploring our beautiful world.
The Top 5 Tips for Traveling with Diabetes This Summer
(All tips and recommendations from the American Diabetes Association.)
See your doctor before you head out and possibly have a medical exam to ensure your diabetes is in good control. This will give you some peace of mind while away from home.
Wear a medical ID bracelet or necklace that shows that you live with diabetes. This will be helpful in case of an emergency and allows others to be aware of your medical needs. A medical ID can provide crucial information about your health condition and also list allergies in case of an emergency.
The ADA recommends that you pack twice as much medication and supplies as you think you will need for the trip. Keeping your supplies in your carry-on bag is important because checked luggage can potentially be lost (if you are flying), and this ensures your medication and supplies are with you at all times. Allow for extra time at the airport because security might take additional time with your insulin pump.
Worried about your insulin pump malfunctioning while away? Worry no more! Medtronic offers a travel loaner program that allows you to take a back-up insulin pump with you on your travels. Here is the link to Medtronic’s webpage to apply for a loaner insulin pump. Keep in mind that it will take about two weeks to receive the pump, so plan accordingly.
When traveling with insulin, especially if you are traveling by bike or car, you may have to take a few extra steps to keep it at the right temperature. Insulin does not need to be refrigerated, however if you store insulin in places that are too hot or too cold, its effects may be disrupted. Storing insulin in the glove box or somewhere in your car may not be the best option because of potential extreme temperatures. If you are traveling by car, bike, or you are out exploring in hot conditions, try using travel packs to keep your insulin cool. The insulin protector from the HLMS online store may be helpful when carrying insulin for your summer adventures!
Go check out Beyond Type One’s travel webpage, which will provide you with various stories and tips from people living with diabetes who have traveled the world.
Do not let diabetes hold you back from enjoying yourself, great adventure, and good company while you’re on vacation. After all it is called “vacation” for a reason, and it’s made for relaxation!