Diabetics and Vacations

If you are a diabetic, it can in certain situation pose problems when you need to travel. Luckily nowadays this problem can be solved by the diabetic person taking simple adequate precautions before they set off on their journey.

When trips and journeys are made to a foreign country, they should be carefully planned. Before leaving, ensure any information about the habits of the country, its climate, food, customs and legislation, plus schedules of activity, level of hygiene and the supply of drugs needed are to hand.

Also be aware of the duration of the journey, the meals envisaged, and the time differences (if any).

It is necessary to ensure you take adequate precautions during both short and long journeys. The main things to remember is don’t forget your priorities and know how to deal with unexpected situations.

  • For the non insulin-dependent diabetic patient, you should be wary about gastronomical problems which may crop up in unknown restaurants. A good solution to this is to carry a meal made according to your own taste. Replacement diet food can be used if your doctor agrees.

  • For the insulin-dependent patient, the most important thing to remember is your insulin. During a short journey, insulin is fine in a normal temperature. However after a period of time, it should be refrigerated. You should never store your insulin on the rear window when traveling in a car as the sun will make it ineffective.

  • If the trip is made by car, the diabetic person should ensure their glycemia is under control before their departure. Never drive more than two hours without a break and/or meal. It’s asking for trouble.

  • If the diabetic person plans to go on holiday (vacation), they must be careful when loading the car. It is an additional physical exercise which may cause a risk of hypoglycemia on the journey.

  • The diabetic should also think about any unexpected events that may occur such as breakdown, or traffic jams etc. Do they have within reach plenty of drink, food and insulin?

  • If the person is using the train, they should also have a meal and their insulin prepared and handy in the event of a delayed or late arrival.

  • If the person stays in a hotel, they should ensure they have enough to eat and drink to prevent night hypoglycemia with loss of conscience. It is a good idea to write a note with simple instructions to be followed on the bedside table just in case they do lapse into unconsciousness.

  • During any excursions whilst on vacation, the diabetic person should take care to ensure they are staying in clean and hygienic conditions. The problem of their insulin transport and its conservation is solved using a pen which the diabetic should protect from excessive heat.

  • The diabetic person should always have in his bag a pen with insulin and food for any unforeseen moments on any excursion they go on.

  • The person should keep their watch on their own standard time so their diabetes can be kept at the usual regime.

  • When traveling in a boat, the diabetic should be aware of any seasickness they may suffer from. The main problem of the dependent insulin diabetic patient is that seasickness can upset their diabetic condition and cause them to have problems.

If all these precautions are taken, there is no reason why any diabetic person can’t have a safe and successful journey and vacation.