Whether you are planning a summer excursion near your home or a winter getaway to an exotic location, planning before you go can help you manage your diabetes.
If you have type 1 or 2 diabetes, you should take your medication at the scheduled times and monitor your blood sugar closely wherever you go. Whether you’ve been diagnosed recently or have been living with diabetes for decades, here are some tips to help make your trip a smooth one:
Plan your trip and prepare before leaving
Although planning is a way of life for diabetics, there is no doubt that a trip will bring about change. Doing some research ahead of time can help them prepare for new things and face the unexpected. So before you go, ask yourself the following questions: Where are the nearest restaurants and hospitals? Do we need vaccines before leaving? Are there health professionals on site or nearby? This is where you will need to ensure that you are carrying the insulin travel case.
Having your doctor check your health before departure can also be a good idea. To avoid any complications at the airport, he can provide you with a letter explaining your state of health and drawing up a list of survival products that you must take with you.
Wear a medical bracelet or bring an identity card indicating your state of health and how to treat it is recommended. If you are visiting a place where French is not spoken, it might be useful to learn short sentences in the local language such as “I have diabetes” or “I need sugar”. Take out travel insurance , which will be essential in an emergency.
Don’t travel light
Bring a supply of diabetic items as if you were going to travel twice as long as planned. If you are going on a long trip and need to take insulin, put an extra supply in an insulated cooler that you will keep with you, along with all the other medicines you need, on the plane. If you are taking oral medication, have at least twice the normal amount for the duration of your trip. Since baggage is sometimes lost or shipped on a subsequent flight, never store your medication in checked baggage. Airlines allow diabetes-related medication and equipment to be stored in the cabin, so it’s important to have a letter from your doctor explaining why you are carrying needles and medication. The diabetic travel case should be with you.
In addition to the additional insulin supply, you should also be well-equipped with glucometers, test sticks, needles and (if you use one) insulin pumps (don’t forget spare batteries). Pump users should also take insulin and syringes if theirs is malfunctioning or the battery runs down.