QUESTION: I’M HEADED ACROSS THE COUNTRY OVER THE HOLIDAYS TO VISIT SOME FAMILY. WHAT ARE YOUR TIPS FOR MANAGING INCONTINENCE WHILE TRAVELING SUCH A LONG DISTANCE?
Answer: This is a common concern for people with incontinence. Being in an unfamiliar environment, especially one that may have limited bathrooms or restrictions on when you can use them can create anxiety in anyone who has trouble with bladder control. But follow the two main tips and you’ll be on your way to a leak-free holiday!
As with most things, preparation is everything. Knowing that you have some backups in place can go a long way in making you feel more comfortable about your trip. Think ahead to your trip and think about what you might need. Are you traveling by car or flying? Each presents its own challenges for someone who is incontinent. If you’re flying, try to get an aisle seat so you have easier access to a bathroom. Traveling by car? Plan your route where with some designated bathroom stops built in so you’re never going too long without a break. Think about the type of traveling you’ll be doing, and plan accordingly.
You also may want to limit your fluids – within reason. Drink enough so that you don’t feel thirsty, but don’t down that big gulp right before you hop in the car or get on a flight. Use some common sense here.
This one kind of goes along with preparation, but think about what you use on a daily basis to manage your incontinence, and be sure to pack plenty of supplies. Make sure to bring an extra set of clothes with you, as well as extra absorbent protection or medication if you use it. You never know when your travel plans might change due to canceled flights or weather and you don’t want to be stuck without these items. If you’re flying, pack some of these supplies in your carry-on so that you have them with you in the event your flight is delayed, or your luggage gets lost.
If you’re staying at a loved one’s house, consider if bedding protection is needed. Waterproof pads can be a great thing to bring along and will give you peace of mind at night. You also may want to bring along any laundry detergent or plastic bags to put soiled garments in, if needed.
By planning ahead and packing accordingly, you’ll be one step ahead of the game, and will have some peace of mind knowing that you’re prepared for whatever your travels may throw at you!
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