Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Sometimes I wonder who puts this stuff out there.

I am always on the lookout for camping tips, diabetes tricks, and outdoor adventures that are on the cheap.  Recently I was searching the inter-web about "diabetes camping" to see if anyone had put anything out there that I was not doing and could try for myself.  I came across an item on the JDRF inter-web page about "Hiking and Camping Smarts" and had to read it right away.  Maybe they read my blog and decided to see what the number one expert in this field does, but how I was so disappointed on many levels and also surprised at the things I did learn.

Above is the link to the inter-web page and the two ladies that are given credit for the article have some good background on the subject and are medical professionals but I personally dislike it when there is a huge focus on the parents, doctors, families to do the work for the diabetic no matter what the age (OK so like under 9 they should all be doing this but with the diabetic involved in every step).  I have cut and pasted from the inter-web below:

  • Older kids going away from home should work closely with their care providers to adjust their routine; Dr. Simon advises that children under age 8 not be away from parents (Mom or Dad: consider going to camp! You can serve as a cook or other staff member and be available if needed).
    - This part is pretty good, having the diabetic work with people on what they should do.  Remember diabetics are the one with the disease and need to be able to do it themselves and then educate others how to take care of them if anything comes up, and don't be a cook at your kids camp just to keep an eye on them let them get out from under your wings.
  • When going to a nondiabetes camp, such as a scout or church camp, your parents, care providers and camp medical staff should make a game plan ahead of time. For instance, each day at dinnertime Dr. Simon receives a phone call from her patients' camps to discuss daily food and activity so she can prescribe proper dosages.
    - If you are calling your doctor everyday from camp either you have too much money or need to get kicked in the nuts for having to discuss meals with your doctor hundreds of miles away.  Freakin learn your diet either it is carb counting or something else but your doctor did not see what you did all day nor do they know what you are doing later.  Hang up the phone and have fun and test all the damn time if you are worried about your numbers getting low and work with the staff medic.  It is a thing called "trust" get familiar with it because you need it with diabetes.
  • Make sure you can call your doctor anytime from camp. If your camp is not willing to cooperate with your needs, don't go!
    - The camp medic should have your medical form on file with your doctors name and number and be aware of your disease and be willing to work with you but if they let you even use a phone at camp that is a camp to never attend again.  There is a reason it is called camping and not sitting in the city on your computer and cell phone LOL'ing with your doctor all day.
  • Always keep water with you. On hikes, carry water purification tablets. With diabetes you are at extra risk of dehydration.
    - This is great advice and I have mentioned it several times on my blog.  Water purification tables fit in anything and can save your life.
  • Be eco-smart and prepare ahead of time for carrying out your used supplies from a hike. Clip your needles, recap and then double-bag with used lancets and other trash.
    - A little bit of common sense here but don't stress the "eco" part too much, first be safe with your disease then worry about that carbon insulin foot print thing later.
  • Pumpers: Always carry supplies for shots in case of emergency, as well as extra batteries and insulin.
    - This is very important and you need to know exactly what to do because I have had every sort of issue with my pump in the backwoods and having a brain on my head and some simple backup supplies has helped me tremendously.  When in doubt bring two extras of everything.  I carry three extra meters because once I had two meters go dead on me.
  • Make sure an adult will be checking you in the middle of the night, especially after a day of strenuous activity.
    - I don't know about this one, I recommend the tent buddies or bunk mates to be aware and willing to help if anything arises.  Trust me when you are low whoever is in that tent with you will be awake and should know what to do.  The tent buddies should know where the adults are and know to get them once you have stuck the diabetic in the but with his glucagon and stuffed his mouth with gummy bears.
  • When hiking, carry your supplies in the middle of your pack next to your back, so the sun will not be beating down on them. Also consider packing a second set elsewhere, in case one falls into a river or ravine!
    - This is excellent advice and I have never thought about teaching this, see what searching the inter-web can find you new learning's all the time, even for the diabetic camper himself.
  • Keep your meters inside your sleeping bags. They won't work or will provide inaccurate readings if too cold.
  • - I found this one out the hard way and now do this anytime it is below 50 degrees.  Remember there are no meters made to be outdoors for more than like ten minutes.  They are free pieces of crap that go in the trash every six months or so.  Heck if it is pretty darned cold use several types of meters and do an average of them all. 

    1 comment:

    1. Love your commentary. I have had to use hot hands to keep Joe's meter working in the cold winters here in VT.