Now you’re at secondary school you’re bound to have lots of opportunities to spend time away from home. This doesn’t necessarily mean an overnight stay, as there are plenty of other reasons why you might have the chance to get away from your parents for a few hours!
Going to a Party
You’ll probably have lots of invitations to parties with your friends. You’re bound to be an expert at managing diabetes by now but there are a few things you’ll have to be aware of to make sure that you can deal with anything that might happen:
- Make sure your friends know that you have diabetes. You should tell them how to recognise a hypo and how to help you if you have one
- Your parents may want to chat to the parents of your friends to make sure they are comfortable with the fact that you have diabetes. Don’t worry about this, they’re not trying to be difficult, they just want to make sure your friends’ parents don’t have any surprises
- Keep a list of emergency contact numbers in an obvious place (in your bag, in your mobile phone) in case your friends need to get help
- Make sure you have a balanced food intake so you don’t go hypo – ensure you eat some starchy carbs and that you have eaten enough to fill you up
- Take a snack with you just in case there isn’t food available, or in case there isn’t enough
- Be prepared to test your blood glucose level during the party and maybe have an extra snack if you are going to be doing a lot of physical activity
- Make sure you take enough testing equipment and medication with you to last for the whole of the party
- You may need to test your blood glucose before and after any event, and also before bed – the combination of different foods and increased activity levels may mean your blood glucose levels fluctuate more than usual
Back to top
Eating Out with Friends and Family
Guidance for eating out is really no different from general healthy eating advice, available in our Diet section. It helps to avoid high fat and calorie dishes such as fish and chips, but this won’t always be possible. You can do simple things like limiting your portion size, or eating more fruit and veg during the day, which can help limit the impact of this type of food.
You may also need to test your blood glucose or inject insulin whilst you’re in a restaurant. You may want to do this in your seat, or you may choose to do it privately in the toilets. Just find a way that suits you, and stick to it.
Back to top
Going on Holiday with Friends and Family
Going on holiday is a great way of discovering new places, meeting new people, and basically spending whole days chilling out and relaxing. Here’s a quick list of points to be aware of before you go – most of these are things which your parents will be arranging, so make sure you show them the list too.
Preparing for a holiday:
- Make sure you have suitable insurance coverage before you go away. Diabetes UK is just one of the organizations offering home and travel insurance for people with diabetes.
- Regularly test your blood glucose when you’re away, as the very fact of being on holiday can mean that their diabetes will affect you in different ways
- Make sure you drink lots of water, especially in hot weather
If you’re lucky enough to be going abroad, you’ll have a few extra things to think about:
- Devise a testing plan with your healthcare team before you go away, to make sure you know when to test, especially if you are changing time zones
- Speak to your doctor or nurse to obtain a note explaining why you need to carry your medication and testing equipment; this should help avoid any difficulties at security
- Keep medication, test strips and meter in your hand luggage so it’s close by, and so the temperature is at an appropriate level
- Pack twice as much medication and test strips as you’ll need, as you won’t know what’s available in other countries
- Ask your healthcare professional for advice on what to do in case you run out of medication or test strips abroad
Back to top