If you have been recently diagnosed with IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), you likely get a little nervous thinking about traveling by air for the first time. There's nothing worse than the fear of a flare up thousands of feet in the air, but you shouldn't let IBS stop you from attending important family events or vacations. Here are some tips on managing IBS symptoms on your first flight.
Book a Seat Near the Bathroom
Try to get an aisle seat as close a possible to the bathroom. Some airlines let you look at the seating arrangements in advance, or if you already have booked a seat, they will let you swap seats.
If you still get a seat too far away from the restroom, inform the flight attendant, and request to swap seats. Don't give them details, but just explain you have a condition that may cause a bathroom emergency.
Also, ensure the seat is by an aisle so you don't have to disturb other passengers. Be aware when you fly to Washington D.C., you will be required to stay in your seat for thirty minutes for security purposes.
When you pack medicine, place the original bottle with your prescription in your bag and extras in your suitcase. Be prepared to take medicine or other items out of your bag for a security check.
Store liquid medicine in checked luggage. Pack an extra change of clothing in your bag in case luggage gets lost or stolen. Also pack baby wipes for cleaning and a plastic bag for storing dirty clothes.
Be Food Conscious
A week before you are set to fly, try to avoid trigger foods. Take bottled water and snacks that will be easy on your stomach, since air plane food isn't always the healthiest. Don't eat heavy meals before flying, and resist the urge to try new food. It helps to eat smaller meals throughout the trip to reduce symptoms.
Practice Relaxation Techniques
Techniques It is important to manage stress and anxiety before the trip, and while you are on the plane. Visualization is a great way to reduce flight anxiety. Choose a scenic place, and imagine yourself in it for about five minutes.
Do deep breathing exercises. With the eyes closed, lay one hand on your stomach, keeping the little finger slightly above the naval, and place the other hand on your chest. Breathe in and out slowly to a count of three.
IBS shouldn't keep your from enjoying a vacation destination of your dreams. Get examined by your doctor at a place like Naugatuck Valley Gastroenterology Consultants LLC before you travel by plane.