When we have to carry anti-diabetic drugs and injecting equipment, “traveling light” is often synonymous with “heavy regrets.” If you are dependent on these items at home, you will also need on the road.
Allow extra medicine
- Bring at least three days of drugs more than you will use. This way, you will not find yourself in trouble because of car problems or delays in airports.
- If you go on a long trip and want a few extra days of medication, ask your doctor to prescribe you a bit more than the usual.
Prepare to face hypoglycemia
- If your doctor recommends you keep glucagon on you to treat episodes of hypoglycemia, follow his instructions to the letter.
- Make sure your companion knows how to administer it. If you can inject a dose of glucagon, you are probably aware enough to treat hypoglycemia by eating or drinking carbohydrates.
“Briefed” your travel partner
- Show your traveling companion where you keep your diabetes medicines. He or she can fetch you if you are unable. You should also teach them to recognize the signs of hypoglycemia, which may occur without warning.
- Symptoms include confusion, dizziness, sweating, and tremors. Ask your partner to bring you a soda, hard candy or a small bottle of juice to restore your blood sugar quickly.
Prepare for daylight savings
- Consult a map with time zones and count the number of zones you pass through on your way to your destination.
- If you go west, the days lengthen and you may need more insulin injections. If you go east, the days shorten and you may have less need for insulin.
- If unsure about your injection schedule during your flight, consult your doctor.
- Transporting drugs and injecting equipment in their original packaging. Bring the manufacturer labels with your insulin and supplies you use.
- You might make you drive back to the airport security check in if your packages are mislabeled. If these items take up too much space in their original box, put them in your luggage outside their box, flatten them and carry them flat in your hand luggage.
- You can leave them effectively if a security guard becomes curious.
Do not be tongue in your pocket
- Feel free to tell airport screeners are carrying diabetes supplies and keep all labels on you with your ticket. You’ll be able to board easily.
- If you use an insulin pump, insist they visually inspect.
Protect others and yourself
- Keep a container of sharp objects in your hand luggage so you can store your needles and lancets used while waiting to go home, where you can throw them safely.
- You will find these small containers with puncture-proof walls and a tight-fitting lid in pharmacies.
Protect your insulin thermal shock
- Extreme temperatures can affect the function of insulin. If you are walking or cycling on a hot day, for example, put your insulin bottle in an insulated bag to keep cool.
- If traveling by car, do not leave your insulin on the dashboard or in the glove compartment.
- If you hike or ski, keep insulin in a pocket against your body.