Don't leave home without it

Recently there was a couple, both of whom were insulin-dependent diabetics, who were trapped in their car for 5 days. They didn’t eat and managed to come out of the whole ordeal with minimal problems. It made me wonder, however, how many diabetics go for drives in the country, to other towns or states, etc and don’t take their meters, insulin, syringes, food and so forth. I have candy, food and syringes in my car at all times. I rarely leave home without my meter and strips. If I go out of town, especially in the winter, I take a bunch of food and other supplies to go with the insulin. I’ve done this since I was 16 and got a driver’s license. I just don’t leave home without my supplies. How many of you leave home without your insulin, meter, etc? Do you take these to work? (I work at home.) The whole idea of being stranded without my supplies is truly frightening. I never fly due to the hassle of taking these items on an airplane and I won’t go without them.

I feel like I’m naked if I leave the house and I don’t have my bg meter in my pocket.

How I handle going between home and work:

One set of supplies (meter, strips, insulin, syringes etc.) I keep at home.
One set of supplies I keep at work.
One (more minimal) set of supplies I carry with me.

Usually the home insulin in the fridge is the “freshest” but when it’s getting near the bottom of the bottle I cycle it out with supplies at work or backpack.

I heard about that couple on the news, amazing huh?

I am planning my third cruise this fall. The first two went fine, carried extra supplies, but I always worry, being out on the ocean with no pharmacy nearby. I am using the pods, and worry about them being defective. I plan to bring a whole box of pods (10) just in case. Also I bring extra insulin, test strips, etc.

Sometimes I think I’m paranoid or something because I never ever leave home without enough food for a picnic, candy and glucose, and diabetes supplies for a weekend. It came in handy once not long ago when I went to a party an hour’s driving from home, and one of the members of my group became ill and wound up in the hospital. I was away from home staying in a hotel for the next 24 hours, and while I could buy food I surely needed my glucose tabs and insulin, meter, etc.

Thank goodness for purses! I never leave home without my meter, syringes, insulin, and prenatals. I have a supply of food and water in my car at all times. Leaving home without my meter would be like walking into town without a shirt!

Always take my meter, strips, and insulin. I have enough food in my purse to last quite awhile. Car is loaded. LOL I have OCD when it comes to my diabetes stuff…always have plenty. My purse is also a lethal weapon!!! .

I was a small purse carrying girl that is until the big D that next week after I found out all that takes to be prepared for anything I took my friend with me to go shopping for a nice medical bag. That is what called a big purse at the time (my first medical bag was Nine West.)

I always make sure I have a snack like almonds or trailmix, a sugar snack like skittles, my meter, water, medical bracelet and insulin with me. I make sure I eat before I leave or I map out where to get something to eat. I dont bring more than that because I have never lived in a place where there is extreme weather like high levels of snow. I do fly often and its pretty easy for me. If needed I carry a cooler with my unused insulin pens with ice packs (never got stopped). Other than that I carry my meds in my purse and purchase the food, snack and water once I get pass security.

I heard this story too. It actually compelled me to start carrying food with me. I always have a couple of little boxes of raisins but not enough for a real emergency. I now have a small bag of non-perishable food items that i leave in the car. I always had stashes of stuff a the office. I never leave the house without a meter and strips. However, many times the only insulin I have is what’s in my pump. I don’t carry extra. As for flying – I have that down to a science. I have my “kit” that has everything in it. I have never been asked about it by TSA. It goes right through the scanner no problem. The pump – well that’ s a different story – but still not a big hassle once you accept the need for a pat down.

I can’t imagine having no access to insulin for five days without going into DKA or at least being very, very close. I googled it, though, and both these people likely have Type 2 which may explain how they survived so long unscathed (it doesn’t actually say what type, but they were both in their 60s). The article I read said paramedics checked them out and they were well enough to drive home, so it sounds like they didn’t even have extreme hyperglycemia.

I have a little pencil case with insulin, pump supplies, a backup meter and ketone strips, backup emergency glucose, and other non-diabetic medical stuff like my epi pen, bandaids, and Benadryl and Advil. I’m continually trying to figure out ways to make this kit smaller, but I never leave without it. We live in an earthquake zone and have nine major bridges in this city (and lots of smaller ones), so there is always the possibility of being stranded somewhere if there were ever a big earthquake.

Another advantage to a pump, I always have a resonable supply of insulin with me, just don’t go any distance without a full resavoir. I also keep a meter and some food in my car for emergencies. I have another meter at work and they alll use the same kind of test strips.

My concern would have been getting low. Once I’ve taken my insulin for the day, I have to eat. The news article said they were both on insulin. Not eating is probably how they avoided DKA–no food, no need for insulin. Or at least that’s what I would think.
We actually created a first aid kit with all kinds of things, including a gun shot kit (which few people think of) because we do a lot of hunting and target shooting. We also have a cabin about 150 miles from any medical assistance so we learned to think things through before leaving. I did miscount syringes once, had none to spare, and dug one out of the trash to do my PM shot. After that is when we made the kit. Also, I mashed my toe with a 6x6 oak beam (cut a bit gash in the toe, even with shoes) and had no first aid supplies so ended up using a panty liner and electrical tape to cover the wound! This “MacGyvering” is only cute for a couple of times!

Even when you don’t eat you still need basal insulin, though. Otherwise your body can’t get access to glucose and starts burning ketones, which starts you on the road to DKA. I’m guessing they still had a fair bit of their own insulin production and just used insulin to maintain good control.

Keeping a first aid kit around is definitely a good idea. In addition to the little kit I carry I have an “earthquake kit” at home which has many more supplies, enough for a week or more, that I could grab if there were ever some sort of disaster.

I am planning my 2nd cruise this spring. I’ll be on my pump by then and have been wondering about the best way to keep my insulin cool. I did order a Frio. Maybe keep it in the ship doc’s refrigerator? Suggeestions, thoughts?

I use a Frio for taking my insulin out to our cabin. It keeps it cool quite well, as long as you set it where the water can evaporate to keep it cool. I just wet it down when it starts to dry out. However, on a cruise, the Frio may not work as well because of the high humidity so you might have to put it in the ship doc’s frig, if that’s possible.

I am leaving Monday for a vacation in Aruba. I have been there the last 2 years. I take extra everything of my D supplies. I am on MDI and take double the syringes and 2 vials of each of the insulins that I take. Also an extra meter that uses the same test strips as my regular one, and I take extra batteries for the meters. All the D stuff goes thru the security check without a problem. I set off the scanner b/c I have a prosthetic hip, so I get a pat-down. No big deal ! Once on the plane, I ask the flight attendant for ice, which I put in a plastic bag ( I brought from home ) and in the small cooler I bring for the insulins. I also have some food in there ( no liquids.)
You should try flying, it is really not a hassle !

Don’t worry about taking items on the airplane. I always empty my pockets and put everything in my knapsack. Depending on who is checking (like a new person on TSA) the bag usually goes through with no problem. Once a newbie asked her superior about the bar code she saw on my test strip boxes; that was a head-shaker. Another time they checked to see if the powder from my glucose tablets wasn’t more than just powder from my glucose tablets - again, when a TSA manager saw it she smiled and knew there was no problem. And this last time they put my knapsack through again to doublecheck (I guess) that my pens were legitimate. It ended up with no questions and I was on my way. And those are only three of many, many times flying, all of which - except those three - have been problem-free.

Interesting. Doesn’t sound like too much of a hassle after all. Thanks to all who let me know how this works!

Both of my cruises had a small refrigerator in the room, first was on the Caribbean Princess and then the Carnival Miracle, both were Caribbean cruises. I am planning to go on the Caribbean Princess again, this time on a Canada/New England cruise. You should be able to find out whether the ship provides refrigerators in the rooms.

I have all with me at all times in my purse.

Never leave home without at least a spare bottle of test strips, batteries, and an extra pod and a bottle of glucose tabs but I also would never let it limit what and where I go. I wold never let it prevent me from flying! Carrying on diabetic supplies is actually LESS of a hassle than carrying on your little bag of liquids!