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Prepare for Diabetes Care in Heat and Emergencies

If you have diabetes, you need to take extra care in summer, when heat waves, strong storms, and hurricanes can strike. It is important to make a plan and be prepared.

If you have diabetes, you know how important it is to have a care routine. Yet summer weather, with its high temperatures and extreme storms, can cause problems with your routine.  Managing your diabetes becomes more difficult. 

Why is this so?

Let others know that you have diabetes so you can get appropriate care.  If you are a family member, caregiver, or health care provider for someone with diabetes, please share the information below with them.

Be Prepared for High Heat.

National Environment Public Health Tracking NetworkHot weather – temperatures of 80°F –or above, especially with high humidity – can affect medicine, testing supplies and your health.  The heat index measures how hot it really feels by combining temperature and humidity readings.  A heat index starting at 80°F with 40% humidity is cause for caution.  Extreme heat is especially dangerous to:

Be sure you know the signs of heat-related illness and how to respond to symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.  Heat stroke can cause death or permanent disability if you do not get emergency treatment.

Ways to beat the heat with liquids:

Ways to protect your skin:

Your medicines and supplies need protection, too:

Use your cool:

What to Do During Emergencies

People with diabetes face extra challenges during emergencies and natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, and tornadoes.

Plan Now for Emergencies.

Now – before an emergency strikes - make an emergency plan for you and your family.  To learn more about how to do this, visit Ready.gov.

Always wear identification that says you have diabetes.

Plan for Your Family.

You can find more information at the following websites:

Source: This article was adapted from information found on CDC's website Prepare for diabetes care in heat and emergencies.

For more information:

Go to the Diabetes health topic, where you can:

Last Reviewed: Jul 31, 2013