Hi, I am Benjamin Borst and I am a 2nd Year Graphic Design student at the Arts University Bournemouth and I need to acquire some first hand research about diabetes and the various issues surrounding it. I am currently doing a project where I need to ‘Design for Good’ and solve a problem through design. I have decided to do something for type 1 diabetes as my cousin was diagnosed and I knew it was a hard time for him and his parents. I want to know the key issues surrounding diabetes so I can pinpoint an issue and create designs in attempt to ease patients with the conditions. I am currently considering how I can compact the amount of equipment used or even develop a device that helps carry what you need during exercise such as running or cycling without using a rucksack.
I would greatly appreciate your insights so I can develop my project further.
Cool project! I wonder if it would work for you to design a pack that is specific to travel supplies. When Type 1’s travel, we pretty much need to plan for the zombie apocalypse and take double of that just in case there are delays, so the amount of supplies can get unwieldy. I pack at least two vials of insulin in a FRIO cooler pack; insulin pump supplies including infusion sets, reservoirs, IV prep, alcohol pads, and inserter device; Symlin (an injectable hormone) with needle tips; and a couple extra vials of test strips. It would be interesting to see what you could come up with to help keep the smaller items organized yet not add much to the bulk. Let me know if you need links to photos of these items and I can find some.
I’m graphic design nerd myself and understand your need for good data to feed into a possible infographic. Please use me as a resource as I know the landscape very well.
That being said as per your question, we have MANY devices at our disposal but pinpointing exercise is hard to do, as each of our bodies react differently – not to mention the role of time of day or level of stress! Hence you can see why managing diabetes may seem simple, but it isn’t.
Message me should you want to chat designer-to-designer…I think I have helpful insights to your type 1 diabetic project.
T1D for 32 years, here. I have always considered myself an athlete and continue to stay very active. I have tried all kinds of fitness endeavors, including some extreme endurance events. Following your idea, in a perfect world a T1 could reasonably need access to a blood glucose meter, glucose tabs or packets of glucose gel, a glucagon kit, their insulin pump (which needs to be relatively secure and not at risk of being bumped off or torn off), possibly a CGM receiver (if they’re not using an integrated pump,) insulin and syringes (if not on a pump or as a backup,) and of course water or another hydration source. Specific needs would all depend on their chosen sport. For example, for my 90 minute bootcamp, I do NOT carry all of this on my person, but I have it all nearby in a backpack. I have my pump, CGM and glucose gels on me at all times, no matter what. BUT, for the 12 hour events I have done, I need ALL of this on my person in the event of an emergency, and I use a rucksack (with an integrated camel back for water.)
I hope this helps, and I’d love to see what you come up with.