Away from Home

Away from Home

Diabetes should not prevent your child from enjoying family vacations, slumber parties, or trips to see grandparents or other family members. But there are important ways to prepare, especially if your child is not going to be in your care.

Plan Ahead

If your child will be away from home for an extended trip, it’s a good idea to go to your doctor to get a check-up and be sure to ask for:

  • Written prescriptions for insulin and any medication. Then, if the travel supplies are lost or damaged – you are only a pharmacy visit away from replacements.
  • A doctor’s letter describing everything needed for treatment, including medical devices. It should also note any food or medicine allergies or sensitivities.

If your child will be going away without you, always make sure an adult is around who knows how to help with daily management of diabetes (blood glucose checks, insulin shots, etc.), as well as when high or low blood glucose (blood sugar) levels occur. Spend some time with the adult helping them to understand your child’s unique signs of high or low blood glucose levels. Then demonstrate how to:

  • Check blood glucose levels
  • Count carbs or stick with the food plan
  • Measure and give insulin
  • Treat highs and lows
  • Respond to an emergency – especially when it requires glucagon
  • Help the adult caring for your child to know what your child can eat and how that relates to his diabetes care. If possible, create a menu with your child and the adult in charge so that you all can agree on meals, snacks and insulin doses ahead
    of time.

If possible, ask your child (if appropriate) or the adult to check-in and let you know their diabetes management is going.


Start Packing

Be sure to pack twice the amount of diabetes supplies that you think your child will need. Your packing list should include:

  • Insulin
  • Syringes
  • Blood glucose testing supplies
  • Pump and/or continuous glucose monitor (CGM) supplies
  • Ketone testing strips
  • Glucagon
  • Glucose tablets or fast-acting sugar to treat low blood glucose
  • A medical ID card (your child should always wear a medical ID bracelet)
  • Day and night phone numbers for your D-team
  • All your contact numbers
  • Batteries
  • Snacks like peanut butter and crackers
  • First aid kit
  • Anti-diarrhea pills
  • Anti-nausea drugs