Wednesday, September 2, 2009

5 Diabetes Travel Tips

Planning ahead when you travel reduces stress. This is particularly important for a diabetic. These 5 diabetes travel tips are simple to implement and crucial to your diabetic management. They are particularly important if you are traveling abroad.

1) Have a pre-travel check-up. Make sure your A1C blood sugar levels; your blood pressure and your cholesterol levels are OK. Get the appropriate shots for any country you plan to visit.

2) Wear a diabetes medical ID. Ideally it should be in the language spoken in the country you're visiting. Not everyone speaks your language and you don't want medical problems through misunderstandings.

3) Keep your medication and glucose snacks in your hand-luggage. Check-in baggage does, unfortunately, go astray. Don't risk your diabetes medication by packing it in your main luggage.

4) Keep your medication in its original box, complete with pharmacy labels. It will prevent misunderstandings about why you are carrying drugs and, if you are on insulin, syringes.

5) Be aware of time zone changes, especially when altering your watch. Remember when you travel east your day becomes shorter; if you travel west your day becomes longer. You may need to alter the timings of your medication.

Traveling need not be traumatic. A sensible attitude and a bit of pre-travel planning can make things go far more smoothly.

7 Diabetes Foot Care Tips

If you don't look after your feet you run the risk of developing sores or infections that could, in the worst case scenario, lead to amputations. As happened to my father-in-law. Reduce your risk of infection or amputation by incorporating these 7 foot care tips...

1) Check your feet daily - especially if you have low sensitivity or no feeling in your feet. Sores, cuts and grazes could go unnoticed and you could develop problems leading to amputations.

2) Don't go around barefoot, even indoors. It's easy to tread on something or stub your toes and cut yourself. Protect your feet with socks/stockings and

3) Be careful if you have corns or calluses. Check with your doctor or podiatrist the best way to care for them.

4) Wash your feet daily in warm, NOT HOT water. And don't soak your feet (even if you've been standing all day) because it could dry your skin and form cracks or sores.

5) Take extra care to dry your feet completely, especially between your toes. These are natural moisture traps - leaving them damp or wet could create all sorts of problems.

6) Exercise your legs and feet regularly. Even when sitting you can rotate your ankles; wiggle your toes or move your legs up and down. These all keep your blood circulation flowing and helps to minimize the risk of foot problems.

7) Get your feet professionally checked, at least once a year, for sensitivity and signs of any problems. You can usually arrange this when you have your annual check up for your AC1 levels (blood glucose levels over a 3-month period), blood pressure and cholesterol.

Take constant care of your feet. Get help from a relative or professional; Doctor, diabetic nurse or podiatrist if you are not able to bend when trimming nails or checking for sores. Taking these simple actions will help you reduce the risk of painful problems.