5 Tips for Diabetics on Long Road Trips


Apprise Your Medical Team

Diabetics should never feel like they're traveling alone. Make sure you contact your doctor and medical team beforehand (six to eight weeks is a good timeframe) to assess your current state of physical fitness and diabetes maintenance, to address any possible acute medical issues that might arise, and to make sure you have adequate medication and supplies.

Laura Jones is a Massachusetts mother of a teenage son, Trevor, who has Type 1 diabetes. She developed a long laundry list of precautions designed to make sure her son stays safe when the family is traveling.

"Basically I have supplies everywhere -- car, cooler, purse, suitcase, Trevor's bag," Jones explains. "I pack three times the amount of supplies I will need, and carry those in three different places.

"Above all, I make sure that his MedicAlert necklace is on, and in plain sight."

Immunization shots, which can disrupt insulin levels, should be administered four weeks prior to departure [source: WebMD]. A call to your health insurance provider would be wise as well to ensure you have proper coverage no matter where your travels take you.

Your physician should be able to be able recommend doctors and hospitals in the general vicinity of your destination. And always keep a list of phone numbers of your medical team with your medications.

If you're road tripping across national borders, a list of English-speaking physicians can be found at the International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers [source: Chandran].

Find out why your routine shouldn't change across different time zones.