It's March but there's still plenty of cold weather left. Diabetes doesn’t have to keep you indoors in cold weather. With care and planning, you can get outdoors with your insulin pump and enjoy an active winter lifestyle.
Are you the type of person that likes to be outdoors in any kind of weather? Did winter find you flying down the ski slopes or skating across frozen lakes—at least until an insulin pump came into your life? Are you now afraid of the consequences of being outdoors for long periods? Don’t despair. Diabetes doesn’t have to keep you indoors. With care and planning, you can still enjoy your active outdoor winter lifestyle.
Temperature Facts about Insulin Pumps
Insulin pumps are generally manufactured to operate in temperatures ranging from 40°F (5°C) to 104°F (40°C). This means that if you intend to spend time in temperatures beyond these parameters, you need to take some extra care to protect your insulin pump from the extremes. You also need to remember that insulin temperature requirements are different from the pump itself, so be sure to read and follow your particular insulin instructions as well.
Protecting Your Insulin Pump
The first suggestion is pretty straightforward: wear your pump beneath your clothing, close to your body. This will shield it from the cold, plus your body heat will help to keep it warm. If you’re headed out to the slopes, and are wearing ski pants over another pant layer, stick your insulin pump in the pocket of the inner pair of pants. A shirt pocket or an inner pocket on your jacket are also locations you can place your pump. If you’re unsure whether this is enough protection, buy a second pump cover. It will insulate the pump from your body heat, but also from the cold outside.
Don’t forget that cold also saps power from batteries. Keep a spare set of batteries, an extra infusion set, and extra insulin, in your ski bag in case you might need them.
Remember that things don’t always go as planned when you’re out in the cold. Take along some glucose tabs, in case the chairlift breaks down. Stick a second set of insulin pump batteries into your inner pants pocket to keep them warm and available in case your clothing gets wet and no longer insulates your pump from the cold.
Finally, if you’re going to be outdoors for short periods of time, say to shovel the sidewalk or have a backyard snowball fight with your kids, consider leaving your insulin pump inside and taking a small bolus to compensate for the basal rate insulin that you will miss by being disconnected. Then you can relax and enjoy your winter fun without worrying about the welfare of your insulin pump.
For further information, and answers to all your questions about insulin pumps and other diabetes supplies, contact the experts at Focus Express Mail Pharmacy. Call us today at 1-866-403-6287 or visit our website: www.FocusPharmacy.com.