Since my asthma entered a level of weirdness beyond control by the standard FloVent/Ventolin combination, I’ve worn some sort of medical identification (they started off with random ICE tags I got made at the pet store with the engraving machine, if you want me to be perfectly honest, and then i got a plain silver dog tag made at an American Wal-Mart). I wear ID not with the anticipation anything will happen rendering me unable to speak, but in case it does. I’m as active as possible, and all over the place–whether I’m out on the road, at work or school, outdoors training for a race, indoors working out or hanging with my friends, not everybody around me is going to know my medical history. And while I don’t go to great lengths to “hide” my asthma, it happens often enough that people don’t know (that part gets kind of awkward when I’m playing goofy gym games in school and have some sort of coughing spasm/respiratory situation. Ahem). In reality though, you just never know what will happen, and being proactive is NEVER a bad idea.
Sidebar: I spent a year as a MedicAlert member, but I was not impressed when they jacked the prices up for membership into their database–and this is without mentioning that the Canadian system, which is linked to the same hotline as the American system, costs significantly more for IDs as it is. I loved the security of the MedicAlert system, but when it was going to cost $60 a year, I realized there were many more things I could do with that much money. They offered to lower my membership fee, but that doesn’t help anybody but me. So i didn’t renew when it came time to.
Additionally, I like to have options. I don’t have a choice that I have asthma. I choose to wear medical identification jewelry, but that doesn’t mean I’ll wear just anything. I have a necklace that looks like a guitar pick that simply says “asthma; organ donor” [the fact that I want my organs donated in the case that I die unexpectedly is so important to me that it is engraved on all of my medical IDs]. I have a RoadID Slim, which I can change the band colour on. The Interactive RoadID is an integral part of my medical ID, as the bracelet I am wearing in the picture on the right contains the information to access my Emergency Response Profile that is connected to my RoadID.
My “everyday” bracelet is the one in the picture to the right. It’s simple, and while it looks like a medical ID, it’s not drawing a huge amount of attention to itself. [Oh, it also now has a cupcake charm on the opposite side of the ID plate]. I’m planning to at some point get another tag made so I can put pretty beaded bracelets on it, but I kind of suck at making those and stuff.
And, obviously it’s important that it coincidentally matches my guitar! I ordered the bracelet before I bought that guitar, but I am way okay that they match.
On recommendation from my friend Steve, I got this bracelet from My Identity Doctor. You’ll notice I don’t have the front engraved, which is for multiple reasons. I fit tons of information on the other side, so I didn’t need to use the front side. And while I’m open with the kids at work if they ask me any questions about my asthma, I really don’t want them staring at my bracelet all the time–“What’s your bracelet for?” “I have asthma.” “Oh! So-and-so has asthma too! Can you draw me a kitty? When are we going to the gym?” is much better than “What are all those numbers for?” “So can you do _____?” x 8000 other questions [those questions are fine infrequently. Every day not so much]. Other reasons include sketchy bus strangers and people I don’t know. If they really need the information, they can flip it over. Hopefully, though, the only time it needs to be flipped over is next time I have to play the casualty in first-aid training and the first-aid-knowing bystander finds my bracelet [it happened once. I was used as an example and everything].
The engraving on the back is black-filled and laser-engraved, and is super clear to read. Jon at My Identity Doctor does an awesome job, and I’d highly recommend checking out his store when you’re in for your next medical ID purchase. Available IDs feature a variety of colours and a couple different styles–they’re simple, high quality and a decent price. Jon also shared the discount code SSRJ which can be used for a 25% discount off your purchase until the end of September.
So, if you’ve got some sort of ongoing medical shenanigans, are you wearing medical ID? Why or why not? Let’s talk in the comments. [Perhaps I should start saying “ongoing medical shenanigans” instead of “chronic disease”. That’s academic paper material right?]
Disclosure: As always, I never post about a product or service if I don’t believe in it wholeheartedly. I contacted Jon at MyIdentityDoctor after seeing the prizes/contest page on his site, and I may earn some swag from this post. Regardless, I dealt with him as a customer prior to the possibility of free stuff, and my experience from ordering to receiving my bracelet was nothing but positive. He even sent me a separate e-mail because I said “Hi” to his dog Burton in the notes of my order via Etsy. How cool is that?