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PEP Talk

A Day at the Water Park – How do you handle it?

In a recent Facebook group discussion, Lisa Yonge Gelfand’s son, Carl, 13, posted a question regarding what to do with his pump while at the water park.  No doubt a dilemma faced by many kids with diabetes during the summer months.  See what the PEP Squad (Parents Empowering Parents and Peers Empowering Peers) had to say about it…

What am I supposed to do if I go to a water park for 4 hours? – Carl, 13
July 14 at 5:39pm

Do you wear a pump or take shots? Either way I think you'll need to carb up beforehand (your endo should let ya know how many carbs) and check b.g. every hour or so that you're swimming.
July 14 at 8:16pm

Carl uses a pump, which he should have mentioned! He uses an Animas, and we have since heard from them. They say it is ok to wear it rafting or at the water park, since it is water proof to 12 feet.
July 14 at 11:08pm

Melanie is off her pump every day in the pool for like 4 hrs. I give her lunch and cover by syringe and every hour I have to give her .700 unit by syringe, just like if she was on the pump. No highs and she gets to enjoy her day like everyone else. ♥ Hope this helps!
July 15 at 12:28am

Tay also wears the animas ping ~ even though it's waterproof, we have her take it off in the pool ~ she tends to go hypo when swimming ~ though she did jump in the pool once with it on and the pump was fine.
July 15 at 7:11am

Even though we love our animas pump, we have had it replaced twice from swimming. We now take it off and we just went to the waterpark yesterday. We take it off and check him frequently. We cover the part on his body but usually need to redo infusion site. If you use it in water, you should undo the battery cap and the cap where the cartridge is to let out any pressure that has built up due to swimming. We had one explode from the inside out....most likely from pressure. Good luck!
July 15 at 11:23am

We check Deven first. If he is in the 200s, then we just leave him, If he is in the 100s, we will cover it with NO BOLUS and he does take his off...even though it says water proof.  Also they don't need insulin being pumped in if they are active because, with all that adrenaline, the body will burn all those carbs, and then add the insulin and they are bound to go low.  So they don't need it to go swimming. 

We also take it off if he is playing football as well, because it could get damaged.  You also have to remember, EVERY CHILD IS DIFFERENT...but back to the park question...we went to Six Flags Great Adventure and Hurricane Harbor...WOWOW…WHAT AWESOME PARKS.  They made me feel so at ease…telling me where the emergency buildings were, what the medical teams were wearing, and also they carry stuff with them, G-D Forbid, if he has an episode.  They were wonderful. 

Also just in case…Don’t walk through any x-ray machines at any parks.  We don’t want to take the chance…just take it off and hand it over. 
July 15 at 1:52pm

Yes, Sherry, everyone is different!!!! My daughter has the opposite effect she runs high when off the pump no matter what the activity then a good 10 hours later, crash city! SO IT IS FOR SURE AN INDIVIDUAL OCCURRENCE! BE CAREFUL...
July 15 at 1:57pm

My son takes his off and monitors it. If it's high, he can either put his pump back on and bolus or get a shot of insulin. We have a pool. That's what we do.
Yesterday at 12:48am

We don't get my son's animas pump wet even though they tell you it's water proof. They do make wateproof covers too.
Yesterday at 12:50am

I've taken my daughter to the waterpark before... You let them know at the gate that you have a cooler for medical purposes & need to know where the first aid station is. They will keep your cooler & bring it to you if you need it. This lets us have snacks, insulin, bandages, etc., in a safe cool dry place & not have to worry with tons of extra stuff. We then also keep a small lunchbox cooler of ice packs with us. In it, we keep Ziplock baggies to keep her pump while she is in the water & a quick carb.

As for doses, the pump comes off when we get there but we keep it with us in a cooler pack. I usually let her snack the whole time w/o bolusing. She tests and gives a correction every hour. We stop for a big meal on the way home. I get up & test in the night just to be sure there isn't a delayed reaction.

It is a good idea to disconnect when on the rides because the forces can cause the pump problems & possibly mis-bolusing. Just a tip I heard at t1-camp from another diabetic.
8 hours ago

Dylan disconnects his pump and uses his insulin pen to inject when he eats and snack,s etc..  He reconnects when leaving. He tests more due to the warm water draining his insulin and him being super energetic throughout the day.
34 minutes ago

Join the conversation on Facebook!

One parent advises, if you use your pump underwater, you should undo the battery and cartridge caps to let out any pressure that has built up.


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