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Travel tips for people with diabetes

Travel tips for people with diabetes

Travelers with diabetes need to take extra precautions and plan their trip well in advance for a safe holiday. Learn about what you need to know when you are traveling with diabetes for a healthy and hassle-free trip.

Before you leave

  • Visit your doctor: Take a blood test to know your blood sugar levels and discuss your travel plans with your doctor. In case you need to take an immunization, plan well in advance at least a month before your travel date as some shots may affect blood sugar levels.
  • Carry your prescription: Carry your doctor’s letter that says you have diabetes and prescription with details of your medication along with dosage mentioned.
  • Label all your medications: Label your medications to avoid hassles at airport security.
  • Get travel insurance: Get travel insurance that covers for acute onset of pre-existing conditions.
  • Know your destination: Be informed about the local medical facilities available at your destination in advance.
  • Carry a medical id: Carry a medical identity card that indicates you have diabetes and shows an emergency contact number.
  • Load on medical supplies: Stash at least twice as much medical supplies in carry-on baggage. You really don’t want to run out of stock in case of trip delay.

During the Journey

  • Always carry some food to deal with eating uncertainties during your travel.
  • Whenever possible request for a diabetic friendly meal low in sugar, cholesterol, sodium and fat.
  • Carry some form of instant glucose like sugar candies or glucose tablet in case of hypoglycemia.
  • Move around and stretch regularly to improve blood circulation and reduce the risk of blood clots.

Things to keep in mind

  • Consider time zones and adjust your clock to your country’s time while travelling to help you stay aware of your biological clock for medication or insulin.
  • Always plan your activities in order to adjust to your insulin and meals.
  • Don’t hesitate to investigate about your food whenever you eat out.
  • Check your blood sugar levels before and after your meals to check how new food is affecting you.
  • Never walk barefoot. Wear comfortable shoes and monitor your feet regularly for injuries like blisters, cuts, swelling etc.
  • Keep a watch on temperature swings. Do not store insulin at freezing temperature or exposing to direct sunlight.

Gadgets to Carry

  • Glucometer
  • Urine ketone testing strips
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