My 17 yr old son is starting his first job. He will have a locker to keep stuff in eventually and then he can keep suppies there… but insulin would need keeping cool… He should have at least 2 changes of pods there right? Any pointers on how to deal w/ all of this and a job too? Experiences you have had?? Things we might not know will be an issue?? Thanks!
I would do most of the same stuff as he would when in school. If the room that his insulin in is room temp and not really hot, it should be fine, or get a tiny cooler with a little ice pack. I generally bring back-up if I am going anywhere that it is difficult for me to get to my supply cache. He may consider putting a few syringes and of course glucose tabs in the back-up pack, and keep a tube of glucose tabs in his pocket also, that way if he gets a low at an inconvenient time, he can just slip a few in his mouth. He can always refill the tube from the glucose in the locker.
What type of work is he doing? If he has a locker it sounds like he’ll be on his feet? When I was 17, my jobs were pretty physical (landscaping, camp counselor), and I do not remember the diabetes being a big deal.
I have had good success with a Frio pack that keeps your insulin about room temperature (70’s) for 2-3 days before you have to “recharge” it with tap water (you just soak it in tap water for a few minutes and let it air dry for about 20 mins). The Frio is available online, just do a web search for suppliers. Depending on how far the job is and how long the shift is, I would certainly make sure I had at least 2 pods, extra batteries, alcohol swabs, enogh insulin for 2 pods, I try to be prepared because I learned my lesson a few years ago on a very hot day in North Carolina when I managed to pull my infusion set off, and, of course I had no supplies with me. I had to load my construction trailer back up and drive back home in the middle of the day for replacements. Good luck to your son! Hank
This may sound radical, but I don’t worry about having backup pods at work or anywhere else that is an hour or less from home. I’m sure some jobs and employers wouldn’t be so flexible, but if a pod were to fail while I’m at work, I’d just take an extended break to go home and change. I work about 30 minutes drive from home, so if I had to come back to the office I’d just stay an extra hour or make up the time some other way.
The way I see it, a pod failure should be treated just as any other medical emergency would be; if it can’t be ignored until the end of the day/shift, then go take care of it and come back when you’re done. I doubt too many employers would have a problem with that unless it was a frequent occurrence.
Keep in mind that, as long as you don’t eat, residual insulin from basal will hold BG in check for up to several hours, depending on the person. I’ve gone as long as 3 hours without a pod with almost no rise in BG. Heck, even if my BG crept up to 200 for a couple of hours, it’s not the end of the world. The stress of worrying about preventing that situation all the time would likely impact my BG and long-term health more than having it go high for a couple of hours once or twice a year.
As for keeping insulin cool, once a vial has been “opened” it doesn’t need to be any cooler than room temp. I keep my active vial on my kitchen counter where the room temp is as high as 80 degrees during the days. Cold storage is only for long-term storage.
First job! So proud! Take a picture (any chance to embarrass them.) I keep my open insulin bottle in my purse for the 3 to 4 weeks that I use it. Like others have said, I only refrigerate the unopened extras. Although I keep spares of everything with me, the only thing I have ever needed at work, luckily, was my Nexcare tape. Sometimes if I get hot, the pod wants to slide off and if I catch it in time I can tape it back on. In a pinch, a bandaid will do. Good luck to your son.
I would keep at least two extra pods, some emergency glucose, some back up syringes or insulin pen needles, and all his testing supplies there. I have found that when pods fail it’s easy enough to keep going without a pod change as long as I’ve got a syringe (although in an emergency a pod change syringe will work but you’ve got to be really careful about monitoring after because any insulin you give yourself that way would be a very rough guesstimate. The other big thing is making sure someone else knows how to get into his locker. It does no good to have emergency glucose locked behind a code you can’t remember or enter on a lock. Insulin should be fine for 30 days at room temperature so I carry my open vial on me at all times for emergencies. The other big thing is to make sure someone he’s working with knows about his diabetes in case there’s a problem. So many misunderstandings can be handled by being upfront and honest about it. Good luck to him!
Oh yes, I forgot that…candy or glucose tabs in his pocket at all times so he doesn’t have to run to his locker should he need some.
Agreed about cooling insulin. I haven’t refrigerated an open vial in 21 years and have had only one bad vial in all that time! The vial stays in my purse most of the time. Of course, unopened vials should always be in the fridge.
He will be working fast food.
He will have a cup that he can get soda atw any time while working… so if he feels low he can just grab his cup and get some sugar soda. He was wanting to keep his pdm in the car… I talked him out of that… esp. in today 's heat… he’d fry it. I think a cooler that he can put in his locker is the best idea… I won’t always be around to go run in a pod change to him… he needs to start being prepared on his own. He is pretty fast at a pod change… so I don’t see how they could complain… the only part that takes time is the priming…
This is just so new… don’t even know what it will do to his current numbers… he has been running high so maybe it will be better. He went to “orientation” today on a brand new pod… sure hope it is working right.
Melissa…love your newer photo. Congrats! Adorable! I always wanted to ask what you were pointing to in your old photo. (Sorry to get off track.)
If he is working fast food then he should be able to keep an unopend vile of insulin in the store’s fridge for an emergency. Just ask the manager. I keep one in my office’s fridge where everyone puts their brown bag lunch.
LOL. In my old photo, I was just about to walk out of the bride’s room and down the aisle when my mother planted huge pink lip prints on my left cheek. I had to re-do my make-up quickly, but first I had the photographer snap a shot of the lip prints. Unfortunately, they don’t show up in the smaller scale photo. This new shot is my blog and Twitter avatar…which will have to change again next spring when BabyBL2 is born.
Wow…one has a hard time keeping up with all your fun news. I hope you and your mother both have a framed print of the pink lips.