As the weather changes you may find yourself planning for a trip, perhaps to visit relatives—or maybe even a full blown vacation to a distant locale. No matter the distance or the circumstances it can help to plan ahead—transportation from Point A to Point B can present challenges, especially if you have any health related issues.
The following guidelines can help you prepare for a trip and improve the chances that it will be healthy and enjoyable for you.
- Consult your doctor. Get a pre-trip medical check up, especially if you have chronic conditions.
- Bring sufficient medication. Be sure to pack a large enough supply of your medications to last the entire trip—and extra in case of unforeseen delays or extended stays.
- Carry a medical alert. If you have allergies or unique medical problems a medical alert card or bracelet is a good idea to alert providers or emergency personnel to your individual need and concerns.
- Pay attention to your diet. Eat healthy and stick to your usual foods if possible. It will help you feel more energized and you are less likely to experience symptoms associated with a change in what you eat. Avoid “suspicious” foods!
- Drink adequate water. Hydration is important no matter what so be sure to drink enough water. In addition your hydration needs may increase if you are traveling to a hotter or drier climate.
- Keep moving and stay as active as possible. Being cooped up in a chair for hours at a time, may cause stiffness and discomfort in the joints. If you are flying, it’s important to adopt seated strengthening exercises, such as marching and ankle pumps in order to promote circulation and mobility. If you are driving, you can take breaks as needed to move about and decrease discomfort.
- Create and bring a memory book. In your memory book, input your itinerary, helpful contact numbers of loved ones and destinations and a list of medications. Traveling can cause confusion and may take a toll on one’s memory because it’s a new, fresh environment and an interruption to one’s everyday routine. Make a list of medications and times they need to be taken to avoid missing doses.
Air or international travel can bring its own set of additional challenges, so be sure to speak with your health care provider to determine your specific needs with these types of travel. It’s important to make traveling enjoyable and safe. Utilizing these tips may alleviate stress for you and for your loved ones, so buckle up, hold on tight, and ENJOY!