The recent hurricanes have reminded me we all need to be prepared for emergencies, but we as parents with kids with type 1 diabetes need to especially be prepared. An emergency kit of essential supplies is helpful to have packed and ready to go, for storms or even if it’s a family emergency where you have to leave town quickly and don’t have as much time to think about what to take.
Here’s some things to pack in an emergency kit:
- Low Glucose Supplies: Treating lows is a priority. Always have glucose tabs or another source of fast acting glucose/sugar. Here’s info on treating low blood sugar.
- Glucagon emergency kit is needed in a kit, but hopefully won’t have to be used. Need help with how to use glucagon? Here’s an app.
- Blood glucose meter, strips, lancing device, and lancets: I include several kits. If you need extra kits, provider offices usually have free ones, just ask. Make sure the batteries are working or have extra batteries.
- Ketone strips and/or ketone blood meter: You want to get a quick start on handling ketones and preventing DKA if blood sugars are running high so having ketone strips is important. Here’s info on ketones.
- Pump and CGM supplies: always have more than you think you will need. These are hard to come by.
- Insulin: you won’t want to pack this ahead since it needs to be cold, but I put a sticky note reminder to grab insulin in the kit. I keep freezer packs in the freezer so they are ready. Having the original box with the prescription can come in handy if it needs to be refilled somewhere out of town. A Frio bag is very handy to keep insulin cold without ice.
- Syringes or pen needles. Even if on a pump, always have back up syringes.
- Batteries or chargers for Dexcom, pumps, and meters.
- Snacks: If you are caught in a storm you may not have immediate access to food, so non-perishable snacks like granola bars, peanut butter and crackers, etc are handy.
- Emergency Contact Numbers
- Doctors Contact Numbers
- Dosing Chart: have your child’s correction and carb ratio doses, along with long acting doses.
- Prescriptions: always have prescriptions on file in a pharmacy that can be filled in an emergency. This includes a prescription for a long acting insulin in case of pump failure.
- Water bottles: these are important for any emergency kit.
This is a great article on Emergency Insulin by Dr Steven Ponder with a PDF for changing insulins in an emergency.
Let me know if I have left off any important supplies! We are all here to help each other out! Feel free to add more info in the comments!
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