Being from Southern California, our summers are filled with all sorts of water activities. Besides going to the beach as much as we can, we spend just about every single day splashing around in our swimming pool. Believe it or not, summertime water activities bring up a few concerns I have about Kaitlyn’s type 1 diabetes care. Here are my top three water issues:

  1. Wrinkly Fingers
    Okay, I know you all know what I’m talking about… trying to get a decent blood dot from slimy, wet, waterlogged fingers while your little one is begging to get back in the pool! My strategy: Check blood sugar levels immediately before letting Kaitlyn in the pool, and keep a small towel handy to wipe off her finger if testing becomes necessary during swim time.
  2. Insulin Temperature
    Swimming (or water activities) usually go hand-in-hand with hot weather! I don’t know how many times I’ve taken a vial of insulin out and then wondered whether it got too hot while it was sitting on the patio table. So now I always make sure to follow the label instructions.
  3. Blood Sugar
    As with any sport or physical activity, blood sugar levels can drop like a rock! We’ve been lucky with Kaitlyn so far because she’s more of a floater than a swimmer…for now. Unlike her cousin James, we haven’t experienced very many low readings because of swimming. My strategy: Check blood sugar levels a little more often than normal while swimming and have sweet snacks ready in the event of an unexpected low.

Here’s to summer and happy swimming!


Disclaimer: The experiences and suggestions recounted in these articles are not intended as medical advice, and they are not necessarily the “typical” experiences of families with a child who has type 1 diabetes. These situations are unique to the families depicted. Families should check with their healthcare professionals regarding the treatment of type 1 diabetes and the frequency of blood glucose monitoring. Jen and Kim are real moms of kids with type 1 diabetes and have been compensated for their contributions to this site.


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