Lesson #6

Out and about

It's very important for people with diabetes to think ahead and prepare for any problems that may arise when they are out at parties and restaurants or when they're away from home. You still need to take care of your diabetes even on vacation.

Here are some other tips:

Tips for eating out:

On the road:

Drive early in the day if you're taking a long trip by car.

Test your blood sugar before driving.

Carry snacks like fruit, crackers, juice, or soda in the car in case your blood sugar drops too low.

Ask ahead of time for a diabetes meal if you're traveling by plane. Most airlines serve special meals for people with health needs. Carry food (like crackers or fruit) with you in case meals are late.

Carry your medicines (insulin, insulin needles, and diabetes pills) and your blood testing supplies with you. Never put them in the suitcase you check in cargo and don't leave this important bag with someone else.

Ask your doctor how to adjust your medicines, especially your insulin shots, if you're traveling across time zones.

Take comfortable, well-fitting shoes on vacation. You will probably be walking more than usual and should take extra good care of your feet.

Ask your doctor for a written prescription for your diabetes pills and the name of a doctor in the place you are going to be visiting if you're going to be gone for a long time.

Don't count on buying extra supplies when you're traveling, especially when going to other countries. Most other countries use different kinds of insulin and needles.

Buy special insulated bags to carry your insulin in to keep it from freezing or getting too hot.

Take extra needles, insulin, and blood test strips when you travel in case of loss or breakage.

Ask your doctor for a letter saying that you have diabetes and need insulin shots if you're going to another country. If asked, show the letter to the customs agents.

Find out when the meal will be served when traveling by plane. Give yourself your insulin shot ahead of time.

See also:
What to do at home?

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