Travel can be exciting, fun, and a welcome relief from your everyday surroundings. Or it may be a necessity, due to work or family obligations. But when you have fibromyalgia, travel is also daunting.
Traveling is cited as one of the most common triggers for a fibromyalgia flare-up, but that does not have to be the case. There are some things that you can do to help prevent that from happening.
It is good to pinpoint what is it that makes traveling such a common trigger. A lot of things can contribute to this. Some of the most likely possibilities are:
- Discomfort during travel from sitting for long hours in a car or plane
- Having to walk more than normal
- Not getting as much sleep as you normally do
- Not being able to sleep comfortably in an unfamiliar place.
And this does not even to begin to cover the stress that can go along with traveling with fibromyalgia. So what can you do to have a fun, relaxing time during your travels? Here are a few tips that may help.
1. Plan Ahead
To have a successful trip planning is vital. Leaving things to the last minute leads to forgetting important items that you need. It can also lead to unnecessary stress as you rush around trying to get things together. And stress, as we know, leads to fibro flares.
To avoid that, make all necessary travel accommodations well in advance. Make sure you have all needed paperwork and documents where you will be able to get to them easily. Trust me, having to leave a cruise boarding line to rush back to luggage check-in because you left your birth certificate in your suitcase is not fun. I can also assure you that arriving at the airport only to realize that your husband drove you to the wrong one is not fun either.
I would highly recommend checking and double checking that you have everything you need, that you know where to go, and when to be there. This will help things go smoothly and lower stress levels.
Early on, decide what you need to take and if there is anything you need to purchase. I find it is best to make a detailed list to easily keep track of what is left to buy or pack. Start packing a few days in advance, so that you can do a little at a time and not become worn out.
At least a week ahead, make sure you have enough of your medications to last you through the end of your trip. It may also be a good idea to check with your doctor to make sure you are healthy enough for travel or if they have any recommendations for you.
2. Check Airline Accommodations
If you are using a wheelchair, whether you are normally in one or feel that it may be necessary for the trip, check with the airline, car rental company, and hotel for special accommodations.
Even if you aren’t using a wheelchair there still may be special arrangements that can be made to make you more comfortable during the journey. Many airlines will offer to have someone help you with boarding and getting to any connecting flights.
But once again, planning is important, as some airlines may require advance notice if assistance is needed.
Next page: three more tips for flare-free travel.