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As a type 1 diabetic, I have found that it's a good idea to plan for the unexpected when traveling. Life is full of surprises, and so are vacations. The flight is late. The flight has been cancelled. We had a flat tire or ran out of gas. There is an accident on the highway, and the traffic isn't moving. Who would have ever thought that airline flights would be grounded for five days in most of Eastern Europe because of volcanic ash from an erupting volcano in Iceland? If a diabetic had planned on going for a week-long vacation in England or France and had taken limited insulin, syringes, or infusion sets, he might have been in big trouble. Trying to replenish medical supplies in a foreign country could prove to be very difficult.
Most vacation surprises are good, but some aren't, and it's those bad ones that we all need to be prepared for. There is an old saying, "Expect the best, but prepare for the worst." When I travel, I assume that surprises will happen and make sure that I am prepared for them. As a type 1 diabetic for over ten years who wears an insulin pump, here are a few of my rules for taking a vacation.
I realize that diabetes is a very personal disease, and what works for one diabetic might not work for another. What I do know is that once you "get a handle" on what works best for you, then it is important to figure out how you can travel with it. I refuse to let my diabetes hold me back from doing what I want to do, but I am sensible enough to realize that plans change, things happens, surprises occur, and I need to be ready.
Diabetes Health is the essential resource for people living with diabetes- both newly diagnosed and experienced as well as the professionals who care for them. We provide balanced expert news and information on living healthfully with diabetes. Each issue includes cutting-edge editorial coverage of new products, research, treatment options, and meaningful lifestyle issues.