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Top 6 Travel Tips For Those Living With Diabetes

Whether you're traveling for business or pleasure, the key to a stress-free trip while living with Diabetes is planning ahead and being prepared.

Use these helpful tips to ensure a worry-free travel experience:

1. Before traveling, confirm your medications, insulin doses, physician(s) information, emergency contacts, and all other pertinent health information is up-to-date. If traveling outside the country, check to see if any immunizations are needed before going. Since some shots can influence your blood sugar levels, ask your doctor any questions you have. If you plan to be gone for a longer period of time, have a thorough medical exam to ensure your diabetes is in good control before traveling. Pack extra insulin or medication(s), and place them in your carry-on as well as your checked luggage. 

2. Wear a Medical IDThe American Diabetes Association recommends those with diabetes, particularly those who use insulin, to have a medical ID with them at all times. This is especially important when traveling away from home. A MedicAlert ID such as a bracelet, necklace, or shoe tag will give you peace of mind when you travel. A MedicAlert ID will quickly communicate critical health information to a first responder, ensuring you get prompt and effective care. 

3. Set your watch. When taking multiple daily injections and crossing time zones, it’s recommended to take insulin at the same time you would at home. So if you take it at 9 a.m. PST but traveling to the east coast which puts you three hours ahead, you’d take your injection at noon. In addition, setting alarms on your watch or cell phone will help you remember injection times while away from your normal routine.

4. Have snacks on hand. In case there’s no place or time to purchase a bite to eat, have your own snacks on hand that you can munch on while traveling.

5. Inform airport security. When flying, remember to put your diabetes supplies in a quart size plastic container that is separate from the other non-diabetes liquids you’re bringing on board; this way, screeners can immediately separate diabetes medications from other liquid items in your carry-on baggage.

6.  Communicate. Tell others that you have diabetesIf your diabetes isn’t known to those you are traveling with, it’s important to inform them of your triggers, and what may occur in case of an emergency.