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[IP] RE: Scuba diving (long)
If you've been diving on MDI, you're in for a pleasant surprise when
you start diving on a pump. It is much easier to keep your bg's close to
Here are some things I learned in the 20 or so dives I've done (in warm
water) since starting the pump.
Disconnect before you dive. Pumps aren't designed for diving. I
kept my pump in brightly colored, insulated lunch bag with my gear, along
with juice boxes and other snacks. I haven't had any problems with my sets
staying in, even in deep or long dives. Make sure you can get to your
disconnect before you get your wetsuit on, and if you're on a busy boat,
it's easier if you don't have to reveal too much skin to disconnect. Two
pieces are good for that reason. I loved my "tankini".
I test several times in the hour before a dive, right before I get
in the water, and right after I get out so I know what my bg is, and if it's
rising or falling. Your buddy will be comforted by this, too. My bg almost
always drops on a dive, so I always start high, too. Now I make sure to eat
a balanced meal before I go, meaning it's got to have some protein, fat, and
complex carb, to reduce the rapid drop. Last summer I was diving or
snorkelling nearly every day for 2 weeks, and reduced my basals by about 30%
for the whole period. YMMV.
I am almost always cold diving, and never figured out the relationship to
bg. Very interesting. My BC typically has several packets of dextrose gel
or tubes of icing sugar. Check your sugar supply every dive. If you tend
to fill your pockets with stuff, the packets can rip.
Stay well hydrated. If you're running high, this is very important.
Diving is dehydrating. Plus, keeping warm on a dive is a little easier if
your bladder is full;)
Before a big trip, you could get a note from your doctor saying it's
OK to dive, just in case a dive shop wants to see it. Tell the divemaster
you're diabetic. They can't help you if they don't know, and they'll see
you testing anyway.
Have fun! :) Colleen
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