Travel Tips for Diabetics

Crossing Time Zones

If you take insulin shots and will be crossing more than one time zone, talk to your doctor or diabetes educator before your trip to help plan the timing of your injections while you travel. Traveling east means a shorter day. If you inject insulin, less may be needed. Traveling west means a longer day, so more insulin may be needed.

Check your blood glucose level as soon as possible after landing. Jet travel can make it hard to tell if you have very low or very high blood glucose.

After a long flight, take it easy for a day or two. Plan your activities so you can work in your insulin and meals. Check your blood glucose often.

If you are more active than usual, your blood glucose could go too low. Take along snacks when hiking or sightseeing. Don’t assume you will be able to find food wherever you are.

On the Road Foot Care

People with diabetes require special foot care. Follow these tips:

  • Pack at least two pairs of comfortable shoes, so you can change shoes often. Changing shoes will help prevent blisters.
  • Do not go barefoot. Instead, wear shoes specially made for ocean or beach walking. Protect your feet at all times when you are walking by the pool, in the park, on the beach, or swimming in the ocean.
  • Wearing open-toe shoes, including sandals or flip-flops, increases your chances for injury.
  • Follow your daily foot-care regimen. Check your feet every day. You should look for blisters, cuts, redness, swelling and scratches.
  • Get medical care at the first sign of infection or inflammation.

With a little bit of planning, your trip can be relaxing and fun.

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