Fun in the sun with diabetes devices
Summer is here, and with the sunshine and hot days comes sweat, sunscreen, and sand. Here are some things to consider regarding diabetes management during this time of year.
Keeping your sensor or infusion set in place:
- Heat and perspiration can compromise adhesive, and it can be a challenge to keep insulin pump sites and continuous glucose monitor (CGM) sensors fixed safely and securely in the heat. Be sure to frequently check insulin pump infusion sites and CGM sensor tape to make sure they’re staying in place.
- Applying a non-deodorant antiperspirant prior to inserting an infusion/sensor site can reduce sweating in the area. Use a solid or spray non-deodorant antiperspirant for sweaty skin (no gels or creams). Apply to your site area and wait 10-15 minutes. Clean your site to remove any excess antiperspirant from skin and allow it to dry completely before insertion.
- You might consider using extra tape or adhesives, so your sites stay secure, even in the heat. Here's a helpful resource with different taping techniques and site management tips for you.
Caring for your insulin pump & CGM during the summer:
- Use a protective pouch to keep your devices secure and out of direct sunlight. Avoid exposing your pump to temperatures above 104°F (40°C) or below 41°F (5°C) as this may damage your device.
- Keep in mind drops and bumps that occur over time will affect the pump case and make it more vulnerable to damage from water. Always be sure to inspect your pump if a drop has occurred to make sure there is no damage. Lotions, sunscreens, and insect repellent can also cause damage to the pump case.
- If possible, keep your pump away from water. If you’re going to be at the beach, pool, or water park all day, consider staying connected to your pump until entering the water or “splash zone,” and take breaks from the water when you need to reconnect. To disconnect for a bit, you can use the quick-release feature (available on most infusion sets.)
- When disconnected from the pump, store it in safe place like a dry cooler or cool pack so that it isn’t exposed to water or high heat.
- At the time of manufacture and when the reservoir and tubing are properly inserted, your pump is waterproof. It is protected against the effects of being underwater to a depth of up to 12 feet (3.6 meters) for up to 24 hours. This is classified as IPX8 rating. The sensor and transmitter are water-resistant at 8 feet (2.4 meters) for up to 30 minutes. CGM readings may not be transmitted from the CGM to the pump while in water. Check your user guide for more details.
- If you’re going to be active in water activities for long periods of time on a regular basis, speak to your doctor about what will work best for you.
Storing your insulin:
- The stability of insulin is also important since insulin solutions degrade at high temperatures.
- Plan ahead in order to store insulin at consistent temperatures during summer travel and outdoor summer activities.
Taking care of yourself:
- Drink fluids! During hot weather, the body loses a lot of fluids through perspiration. Stay hydrated by drinking at least 8 ounces of water and other, sugar-free, caffeine-free fluids often throughout the day.
- Make sure you stay informed about how to stay safe as things continue to change with COVID-19. Take note of these tips from the JDRF and ADA that may be a helpful resource for you.
With these tips, you’ll be set for summer fun!
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION – Medtronic Diabetes insulin infusion pumps, continuous glucose monitoring systems and associated components are limited to sale by or on the order of a physician and should only be used under the direction of a healthcare professional familiar with the risks associated with the use of these systems. – Successful operation of the insulin infusion pumps and/or continuous glucose monitoring systems requires adequate vision and hearing to recognize alerts and alarms.
Medtronic Diabetes Insulin Infusion Pumps – Insulin pump therapy is not recommended for individuals who are unable or unwilling to perform a minimum of four blood glucose tests per day. – Insulin pumps use rapid-acting insulin. If your insulin delivery is interrupted for any reason, you must be prepared to replace the missed insulin immediately.
Medtronic Diabetes Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) Systems – The information provided by CGM systems is intended to supplement, not replace, blood glucose information obtained using a home glucose meter. A confirmatory fingerstick is required prior to treatment. – Insertion of a glucose sensor may cause bleeding or irritation at the insertion site. Consult a physician immediately if you experience significant pain or if you suspect that the site is infected. For more information, please visit: MedtronicDiabetes.com/ISI.