Thursday, April 26, 2012

New Alerts

Do you wear a medic alert bracelet?  Usually that is how we identify another diabetic in the crowd, or at least we try to get a glimpse of what is written on it.  "Darn! An allergy," we might say as realize we aren't sitting beside another diabetic.  Medic alert bracelets are usually one of the first thing recommended by professionals after being diagnosed and for very good reasons; however, is every diabetic wearing them?

I shamefully have my head down right now as I write this blog because I do not wear a bracelet anymore. I wore mine for about 2.5 years of being diagnosed, recently deciding to ditch the bracelet hoping my insulin pump would do me justice. Of course, I know just as much as everyone else knows the importance of actually wearing the bracelet and even better, having specific things written on it.  Although, all mine said was, "Type 1 Diabetes."

Why have I ditched my bracelet? I just didn't want to wear it anymore. I wish I had a better reason that made me seem like my decision was vital, but it wasn't anything in particular. I just didn't want that to be a part of my identity anymore, which is strange, but I was tired of having the same thing on me, once again a strange statement considering I am hooked up to an insulin pump.   The bracelet was ugly, (yes I am aware you can get 'pretty' ones) but mine wasn't. I love my cheap Forever 21 costume jewellery and the medic alert wasn't doing it justice.

Yes, having others aware of your diabetes is more important than looking good, but at the same time, I just had given that part up - if I could change one thing it was to not wear the bracelet, put a card in my wallet, wear an insulin pump, always have my supplies in my bag and if I was with people I knew (which is 90% of the time) let them know I had diabetes.

NOW! This isn't permission to not wear a bracelet, and yes, there are some pretty ones out there like ones made with pearls etc. However, I do want to emphasize that they are important and save lives.  If you are updating them with say, Medic Alert (something we did not do...) and wearing it, then give yourself a pat on the back from me.  There are also a lot of neat ones that I saw many of the male teens wearing at Teen Talk, which was dog tags!    So explore the options!

Speaking of options, lately we started collecting people's photos of their diabetic tattoos on the Type 1 Diabetes Meme Page.  These people have decided to ditch their medic alert bracelets like me, but instead get a tattoo to replace it, (NOT LKE ME!)  Grandma... if you're reading this don't worry!    These tattoos are super unique and some of them I wonder how they even thought of them, but all in all they represent type 1 diabetes in some form or another. If you're interested in checking out the collection, click here:  Diabetes Tattoos! 

This new approach to expressing type 1 diabetes is fascinating and has many people asking, "Well what if there is a cure?"  But, to be honest, I will answer on others behalves, if there is a cure, getting rid of a type 1 diabetic tattoo would be the last thing to think about!

So, for whatever reason, not everyone I am sure is wearing a Medic Alert bracelet to express their type 1 diabetes.  We all know why it is important and why we should wear it, but there is still personal reasons why people decide not to, and I would hope that we wouldn't blame those people for being irresponsible or selfish.  



  1. Rayna doesn't have one yet, but she is now starting to want one (a pretty one like her friend has). Whenever we went somewhere, where she may get lost (eg. Canada's Wonderland) I make her wear a luggage tag that I made up that says she is an insulin dependent T1D and on the other side it has all our cell numbers to reach us. It even says "If I'm lost please don't feed me candy" LOL. It has worked for us so far, but as she starts to venture out more by herself I'm finding the need for one.

  2. I used to but quit in college. Then I got a pump and figured- if that doesn't identify me as a Type 1 Diabetic, whoever is trying to resuscitate me is an idiot.

  3. I am considering a Medic Alert tattoo on my wrist. I've seen a few different designs, but none that really appeal to me yet. I might just go with a stylish design that I like with the words "Type 1 Diabetes" incorporated into it. For now I continue wearing my medic alert bracelet.

  4. I was diagnosed when I was three years old, and I still remember the day my mum put a medical alert around my wrist; I remember it to the finest detail. She brought me in to her room, sat on her bed so she could be at my level, and said, "Honey, mummy's going to put this bracelet on your wrist; you're going to wear it for a while." As an innocent little toddler, I didn't think much of it! So, I just shrugged my shoulders, smiled, and said okay! Since then, I haven't thought twice about taking it off. Mind you, I don't even think the thought has come across my mind to not wear it. If I'm alone in public and have an emergency I want people to know how to save me...especially since I'm not on a pump, my medic alert is what would identify me as a diabetic.

  5. Like Ainsley I was diagnosed young, age 5. Although my first bracelet was not a medic alert one but one with that type of symbol. I don't recall when I got it either. I have had several different bracelets and necklaces. Most I've had to change due to allergic reactions. But I have always had one and wear it whenever I leave the house.

    My being a type 1 is not the only reason I wear my medic alert bracelet. I have several drug allergies. So I need it for multiple medical reasons. When I wore contacts, I had that listed too.

    Medic alert bracelets, watches, necklaces are wonderful for people with any type of disease and/or allergy. A food or drug allergy can be as deadly as someone having a low or high blood sugar reaction.