Tis the season of gifts – whatever your belief, a good majority of people around the world give, receive or ask for gifts this time of the year.
But how does that relate to diabetes specifically? What are the best gifts to give a person with diabetes, their caregiver, parent, spouse or friend?
Consider all the things that diabetes management requires – products for BG monitoring, devices and the associated parts to take insulin, devices to help with tracking (smart phones, tablets, etc.), items to help with measuring food or creating food, fitness equipment or a gym membership, sugar of some type to aid with low BGs, a bag or carrying case for said products, a medical ID, etc.
I could add more, but you get the point…it takes a lot of stuff.
As the person with diabetes, I can tell you, I appreciate a well thought gift that provides me with something I don’t have to pay for personally and also aids with my overall self-management. The year I got a smart scale for Christmas, I was so excited I got out an apple to weigh it just to see what I had been missing as far as more precise information. What was great from a mental standpoint was that it was something I didn’t pay for and it meant that someone (my husband for this gift) paid attention to a need that stretched further than the most recent trend.
If you are a caregiver, consider giving a gift that someone you love who lives with diabetes may need (consider affordability here – there are a lot of things that cost a good deal of money out of pocket even with insurance coverage). It could also be something that might make their life a bit easier to manage or help them move forward in goals to get healthier. Some may even appreciate a donation in their name to a foundation that supports diabetes research or education.
If you are the person with diabetes, consider giving a gift to yourself this time of the year. Look into a new device if your warranty is up, choose a new bag to carry your gear around in, buy a new pair of running or athletic shoes or dance shoes, get a backup to, um, back you up!
Think outside the box with gifts. Life with diabetes is 24/7 – there is no break, so even gifts that allow someone to chill out and relax are wonderful, not specific to diabetes, but can help immensely with management of all the mental stuff involved with diabetes care. Be creative by giving a gift certificate for time together or for the person with diabetes to have time to their self (without kids) to go to the gym, etc.
My list for Caregivers/Parents/Friends/Spouses would include:
- Extra testing supplies – Products such as OneDrop and Diathrive monitors and test strips do NOT require a prescription and are a fraction of the cost of others on the market.
- RileyLink backup – For those who are Loop users, a backup is awesome…just in case!! (make sure you know what type of Riley Link is needed – Omnipod or Medtronic!)
- RileyLink case – https://www.loopcases.com/product/wireless-armour-for-loop/
- Medical ID bracelet – Lauren’s Hope, American Medical ID
- Products to decorate devices – Pumppeelz, GrifGrips
- New Smart Phone/Tablet/Smart watch – pricey, yes, but could be worth it to upgrade for the person with diabetes
- Food Scale – This food scale by Eat Smart Products is great!
- Recipe book – look for one that includes lower carb options as well as nutrition facts for each recipe
Prepared/Delivered meal program – Great for those without time to cook or who just struggle to put healthy meals together (or can’t find their way around the kitchen!)
- Gift card for App store – to allow purchase of apps to aid with diabetes management (carb counting, logging/tracking, accountability, etc.)
- Gym membership – to a facility near their home or place of employment
- Products to aid with workout and BG control – https://typezerohealth.com/
- Low treatment box – juice boxes, fruit snacks, glucose tablets, apple sauce packets, jellybeans, etc. All individually portioned in 5g/10g or 15g portions
- Homemade Gift certificates for caring for kids 1 afternoon per week to allow them to go to the gym OR get time to look at their data or just to breathe
- Massage Gift certificate
- Paid trip to Adult diabetes camp – Slipstream and Diabetes training camp
- Subscription to a diabetes magazine
- Super Hero/Doll with Diabetes – https://heroickid.ecwid.com, https://www.americangirl.com/shop/p/diabetes-care-kit-for-dolls-dhv55
- Gear to show support – http://www.ardensday.com/store, https://shopthedrop.org/collections/new-arrivals
- Insulin care products – Medangel, Frio cooling case
- Bags to carry your gear – https://www.myabetic.com, https://spibelt.com/shop/spibelt/diabetic-spibelt/, https://hipssister.com/collections/frontpage/products/hsx-sport-unisex-waist-band
- A visit with Integrated Diabetes Services to aid with diabetes management – everyone needs a helping hand and a place to check in without judgement – Like Cheers – “Where everybody knows your name”
- Education for Caregiver – Integrated Diabetes services would love to educate caregivers or supportive friends and family – give us a call or make an appointment!
Thankfully this list of things that can help those with diabetes continues to grow and get better year after year. Until there is a cure or an artificial pancreas that does it all for us, lets share some gifts that can make the 24/7 of life with diabetes a bit more manageable and dare I say…fun!