Planning a vacation can be challenging for patients living with diabetes. Remembering to pack all the necessities to manage diabetes symptoms is essential in order to stay healthy and safe in unfamiliar surroundings. Depending on the duration of the planned vacation, you may want to arrange to pick up additional supplies upon arrival at the destination. This can provide added peace of mind by ensuring access to additional medications and other diabetic supplies in case they are needed during the trip. Here are some other points to consider when planning your next vacation.
Pack more than you’ll need
It’s generally a good idea to pack more medication and supplies than you expect to need. This will allow you to manage delays and unexpected situations more effectively and provide you with a valuable safety net, even in areas where your medications may be difficult to obtain. At a minimum, diabetes patients should typically pack:
• A reliable diabetes meter for blood sugar monitoring
• Test strips and lancets for fingerstick testing
• Syringes for insulin injections
• Insulin vials in travel storage packs
Patients who use insulin pumps or continuous glucose monitoring systems will need to pack a few additional items, including:
• Insulin pump
• Infusion sets and reservoirs
• Continuous glucose monitoring system
• Sensors for the continuous glucose system
A good rule of thumb is to write down each item of diabetes management equipment you use throughout the day and week. These items will need to be packed in sufficient quantities to last you throughout the duration of the vacation. Additionally, diabetes patients should always wear medical ID bracelets or other identification to ensure proper treatment if a medical emergency should occur on vacation.
Up in the air
Diabetes medication and equipment should be packed in a carry-on bag rather than in checked baggage. In the event that your bags are lost or misrouted, you can replace clothing or gear more easily than medication and medical equipment. Additionally, you should put together an emergency kit including:
• A spare fingerstick meter with testing strips
• Insulin in a travel storage pack
This handy kit can help you manage blood sugar fluctuations wherever you happen to be when they occur.
Keeping it cool
Insulin travel packs are a great way to ensure that your insulin remains cool throughout your trip. These handy devices can provide up to 45 hours of cooling to allow you to reach your destination safely. Diabetes patients should arrange for accommodations that include a refrigerator in order to store their insulin supplies safely while on vacation.
With a few tweaks and adjustments, diabetes patients can enjoy a relaxing vacation while managing their disease effectively. Proper planning is the key to success when vacationing with diabetes.
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